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Integrating Graduate And Undergraduate Education Through Student Design Competitions

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.354.1 - 3.354.7

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Paper Authors

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Daniel P. Schrage

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

Session 1202

Integrating Graduate and Undergraduate Education Through Student Design Competitions

Daniel P. Schrage, Professor School of Aerospace Engineering Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA 30332-0150

ABSTRACT The Georgia Tech graduate program in Aerospace Systems Design was initiated in 1984 with two rotorcraft design courses as part of the Georgia Tech (U.S. Army Research Office sponsored) rotorcraft center of excellence. The American Helicopter Society (AHS)/industry student design competition has been used as a focus for the rotorcraft design courses from the outset. In 1992 a fixed wing aircraft set of graduate design courses, focusing on the integration of design and manufacturing for the High Speed Civil Transport (HSCT), was also introduced through a grant under the NASA USRA Advanced Design Program (ADP). The Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory (ASDL) was also formed in 1992 to support the graduate design research effort in Concurrent Engineering(CE) and Integrated Product/Process Design/Development (IPPD). In 1995 a space launched vehicle set of graduate design courses was also introduced. While the graduate program in aerospace systems design has been quite successful the need to offer highly motivated undergraduate students a chance to enter national competitions and provide a seamless transition with the graduate program was needed. This has been accomplished over the past few years by having highly motivated undergraduates take both the capstone senior design courses, as well as enter national student design competitions and participate as teams, using the CE/IPPD methodology developed in the graduate program. This approach has proven to be highly successful and has provided an excellent recruiting program for the graduate design program as well as provide a smooth transition. It also has been used to help satisfy the ABET 2000 intent of outcome measurement. With the conversion from a quarter system to a semester system in 1999 we plan to provide an even tighter linkage between our graduate and undergraduate design programs. This paper will summarize our efforts.

INTRODUCTION Engineering education today is built primarily around engineering science courses with a focus on disciplinary analysis. Product synthesis is usually taught in an undergraduate senior capstone design course. System synthesis (product plus process synthesis) is seldom taught due to the difficulties of integration of design and manufacturing and the coupling of synthesis with economic analysis. Multidisciplinary analysis across engineering science courses is also quite rare. For example, a student is not expected to use thermodynamics and fluid mechanics in a course in mechanics of materials. Problems that are worked in these courses are selected to illustrate and reinforce the principles of the disciplinary analysis courses. If the student constructed the appropriate


Schrage, D. P. (1998, June), Integrating Graduate And Undergraduate Education Through Student Design Competitions Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington.

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