June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation
26.1023.1 - 26.1023.7
Introducing Entrepreneurship and Innovation to Engineering Students Utilizing a Mobile App Development ToolEmphasis on entrepreneurship and innovation in engineering education is growing worldwide assmall business creation continues to fuel economic growth. An ecosystem of software tools anddeveloper support currently exists that is well suited to introduce these topics to engineeringstudents through creative product development of readily marketable mobile applications (apps).The earning potential for modern day app sales is nothing short of phenomenal. Even simplisticand basic apps have generated millions of dollars in revenue for their owners. In our approach,the engineering students will actually be able to sell their creations and earn income.It is important to introduce entrepreneurship in the most realistic fashion as possible. Many timesgeneric examples of creating and selling ‘widgets’ are used to describe the product developmentprocess. Fictitious companies along with made-up earning sheets and expense reports are createdand used as class examples. Utilizing our novel teaching methodology, the students will developtheir own apps and get real earning statements detailing their app’s actual sales, refunds, andadvertisement commissions from the world’s largest app store. In this way our course providesfor a truly comprehensive and genuine approach to entrepreneurship and innovation where thestudent’s invention and improvements results in a direct financial gain to its creators.A key aspect of our approach is that we incorporate an app development tool that does notrequire advanced programming skills. This tool instead utilizes an extremely intuitive interfacefor the app’s design and layout. Logical control is implemented through the use of a visualprogramming block editor that removes the actual need to ‘code’ the app. The tool offers accessto all of the mobile device’s key features and capabilities thus allowing the designer the ability tomake very interesting and interactive apps. Teaching the engineer with this tool allows thecourse to focus on the innovative aspects of app development as opposed to spending time andeffort on the syntax and functionality of a particular programming language.In this paper we discuss the details of combining these specific tools to create an engaging andreal world learning environment for all engineering students interested in entrepreneurship andinnovation.
Sassenfeld, R. J., & Nogales, L. (2015, June), Introducing Entrepreneurship and Innovation to Engineering Students Utilizing a Mobile App Development Tool Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24360
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