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Integration Of Statics And Particle Dynamics In A Hands On Project Oriented Environment

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.334.1 - 4.334.13



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Paper Authors

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J. Elaine Seat

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Fred Weber

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Daniel C. Yoder

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Christopher D. Pionke

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J. Roger Parsons

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

Session 1368

Integration of Statics and Particle Dynamics in a Hands-On Project-Oriented Environment

Christopher D. Pionke, J. Roger Parsons, J. Elaine Seat, Fred E. Weber, Daniel C. Yoder

The Engineering Fundamentals Division engage Program The University of Tennessee


Two new courses have been developed at the University of Tennessee (UT) as part of the Engineering Fundamentals Division engage program. Each course is 6 semester hours and they are entitled EF 101 - Engineering Approaches to Physical Phenomena and EF 102 - Fundamentals of Engineering Mechanics, respectively. The courses are taken in sequence during the freshman year by students in all engineering majors. An overview of the entire program and details of the EF 101 course (which emphasizes problem solving and various computer skills such as programming and graphics) have been presented previously. The focus of this paper is the EF 102 course. In particular, this paper will outline how statics and particle dynamics are presented in an integrated, collaborative learning environment that includes traditional presentation techniques, hands-on practice in an open-access laboratory, and application through the use of design projects that are developed through the build and test stages.

The philosophy of the new course can be summarized as: see the concept, feel the concept, practice the concept, and apply the concept. The "see the concept" phase is presented by a professor in a traditional lecture setting that includes all necessary background material and derivations. A simple example may also be presented. On the same day that a topic is introduced, all the students must go to a open-access laboratory and perform a "physical homework" to "feel the concept." In this open-access laboratory, students actually solve statics and dynamics problems by measuring forces, moments, velocities and accelerations, and comparing those results to calculated predictions. The assigning of traditional homework problems and attendance at recitation or problem sessions provide further "practice of the concept". Graduate teaching assistants run the recitation sessions. During the recitation sessions, the students work problems in small teams in a collaborative learning environment. Finally, team design projects are assigned to allow the students to "apply the concept." These projects usually require the integration of several concepts developed in the course as well as the use of computer tools developed in the EF 101.

This paper provides the details of the engage strategy for the EF 102 course including examples of the integrated material and teaching methods. Details of how a concept is presented and reinforced through the four phases (see, feel, practice, and apply) will be outlined. Examples of how computer skills developed in the EF 101 course are integrated with the mechanics concepts presented in the EF 102 course are also presented. Preliminary results from a pilot

Seat, J. E., & Weber, F., & Yoder, D. C., & Pionke, C. D., & Parsons, J. R. (1999, June), Integration Of Statics And Particle Dynamics In A Hands On Project Oriented Environment Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina. 10.18260/1-2--7767

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