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Incorporation Of An Energy Conservation Theme Into Thermal Science Courses

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

New Ideas

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.658.1 - 7.658.11



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Mark Schumack

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

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Session 2533

Incorporation of an Energy Conservation Theme into Thermal Science Courses

Mark Schumack University of Detroit Mercy

I. Introduction

This paper describes how I wove the theme of energy conservation into two engineering science classes, Thermodynamics I and Heat Transfer. I believed that teaching these courses with a theme would not only liven up the material for the students, but also present an opportunity for me as the instructor to become more aware of contemporary energy conservation issues. Additionally, I have taught these classes for about 10 years now and felt the theme incorporation would be a good way to renew my own enthusiasm for the material.

Young and Stuart 1 discuss how teaching with a unifying theme (in their case, a plant trip) can improve student learning. They demonstrated how a theme can facilitate connections between topics, increase appreciation for the practical applications of concepts, and enhance retrieval of information in later courses. In addition, they discuss how a “theme course” can generate enthusiasm for engineering and provide a vehicle for consideration of environmental, economic, and ethical issues. If a student is motivated to learn, and remains motivated, the chances for significant learning are increased. Manteufel2 observes that “students can be motivated by introducing life-affecting applications early and repeatedly in the class.”

The objectives for the theme incorporation were to:

· increase student appreciation for the importance of energy conservation · experiment with open-ended discussion in a “hard technical” class · test the feasibility of weaving a theme throughout an engineering science class without impacting traditional coursework · demonstrate the relevance of heat transfer and thermodynamics to important societal issues

The remainder of this paper describes the methodology of incorporation, provides details on the student assignments, and assesses the degree to which the objectives were met.

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright Ó 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Schumack, M. (2002, June), Incorporation Of An Energy Conservation Theme Into Thermal Science Courses Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11126

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