June 16, 2002
June 16, 2002
June 19, 2002
7.768.1 - 7.768.27
Main Menu Session 1566
INVOLVING UNDERGRADUATE ENGINEERING STUDENTS IN DESIGN OF AN AFFORDABLE MODEL LABORATORY
Bijan Sepahpour The College of New Jersey Department of Engineering Ewing, New Jersey 08628-0718 Tel. 609.771.3463 Sepahpou@tcnj.edu
A promising model for involving undergraduate engineering students in design of experiments and fabrication of their associated apparatuses is proposed. It is a proven fact that students learn better and retain more information by doing rather than hearing or observing. Some also learn best when they are allowed to discover on their own. Due to the influence of the ABET 2000 Criteria, all engineering students must develop the ability to design and conduct experiments, analyze and interpret data, and communicate the results effectively. Many undergraduate engineering programs suffer from lack of equipment/apparatus for experimentation. Commercial units are very costly and generally not exactly custom tailored for the specific needs of certain topics in a course. This model may be incorporated into a typical four-year undergraduate engineering curriculum to successfully address many of such concerns. In their laboratory-oriented courses, student groups are encouraged to design meaningful experiments. In this process, the coordinator may be able to discover those students with a high level of interest and enthusiasm. Some of these student-proposed experiments may be expanded/fine tuned into conceivable and practical entities. Several such experiments and their associated apparatuses that have been successfully conceived through the proposed approach are briefly discussed. These case studies range from a simple and yet quite an ingenious experiment to those that are novel and not commercially available. Elements of Group Dynamics and the instrumental role of the coordinator in recognizing the capabilities and limitations of each group and his/her necessary willingness to spend the time for provision of guidance at the critical stages are discussed.
I - INTRODUCTION
This paper describes the parameters involved in the generation of an exemplary and yet affordable undergraduate laboratory designed for conducting experiments in Mechanics of Materials and Dynamics of Machinery. The central role of the undergraduate students and the instrumental role of the coordinator in achieving this task are discussed.
Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education
Sepahpour, B. (2002, June), Involving Undergraduate Students In Design Of An Affordable Model Laboratory Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10838
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