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Multidisciplinary Design Projects in Engineering Education

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Multidisciplinary Design Projects

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

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Paper Authors


Alireza Yazdanshenas University of Texas, Tyler

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Alireza Yazdanshenas

Mechanical Engineering student form the University of Texas at Tyler (Undergrad)
Will continue my education to my last days.
Born in Iran and Lived in Germany for an extended amount of time.
Dual College athlete yet in love with Engineering.
Hoping to compete in the 2020 Olympics in the Hammer throw.

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Caleb Nathaniel Nehls The University of Texas, Tyler

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Caleb Nehls was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana. He graduated from Southwood Highschool in 2005. After graduating, Caleb joined the United States Marine Corps and served as a Reconnaissance Marine at 3rd Reconnaissance Battallion in Okinawa, Japan from 2006 to 2010. Following his enlistment in the Marine Corps, he worked as a weapons and tactics instructor for Möbius Industries, in Okinawa, teaching Marines and sailors prior to unit deployments. Caleb and his family returned to the United States in January of 2015, when he enrolled at The University of Texas at Tyler and declared mechanical engineering as his major. Currently, he works as a tutor in the University tutoring center for Several engineering courses and is also an undergraduate research assistant in the Mechanical Engineering department.

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Chung-Hyun Goh University of Texas, Tyler

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Dr. Goh has worked as a Mechanical Engineering faculty of The University of Texas at Tyler. Prior to joining UT Tyler, he worked in the Systems Realization Laboratory at the University of Oklahoma from 2012 to 2015. He worked for the Korean government after he received his Ph.D. degree at Georgia Institute of Technology in 2002. Dr. Goh is a member of ASEE, ASME, TMS, and the Institute of Integrated Healthcare in the East Texas. He also worked as a member of the board of directors in the materials and fracture group in the Korean Society of Mechanical Engineers. He has published a total two book chapters, 30 peer reviewed journal and proceeding papers as well as a co-authored textbook.

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In the modern age the engineering filed is rapidly evolving into a complex system with the need of multiple branches of engineering know how to solve modern problems. Electrical, Mechanical, Civil, Software Engineers and even those experts outside of the engineering field should collaborate to produce quality designs and solutions for the Future. With these new elements and demands in the engineering field, engineers are expected to behave like multipurpose tools. Engineers with applicable knowledge form varying technological displaces that can be utilized effectively on demand of the projects. Likewise, the engineers of the future need to be compatible with engineers of the older generation who might have limited to no knowledge of fields outside of their practice. To succeed in the future workforce engineering students not only need technical knowledge, creativity, and soft skills, but also the quality to synergize into engineering systems that include multiple disciplines. With these new requirements of the future engineering education face a new duty of introducing challenges of multidisciplinary design and projects to its students. At the university level, the most effective way to unify various engineering fields is by integrating students through multidisciplinary design projects. These projects encourage teams of students to tackle engineering problems more efficiently as a group rather than as individuals. By combining multiple engineering disciplines, the student is able to collaborate with peers who have a different educational background and to even collaborate with departments that have nothing to do with engineering. This enhances the student’s learning experience by exposing them to nontraditional ideas, while encouraging them to cultivate their own. Most important of all, for the student all other traditional barriers are removed. Thereby the learning and application limits are set by the student rather than by the instructor, curriculum, department and even school district. By giving the students absolute control we allow them to branch out to places and people they would have never been otherwise exposed to. Our teams have worked on multiple multidisciplinary projects in the past few months. These multidisciplinary projects included the Plane on a Pole project, T-Ball Design project, and Cellular Automata Simulation project. Each of these projects has presented its own multidisciplinary challenges which have forced the students to adapt to the modern engineering world. Lastly, the students had to reach beyond their knowledge, step out of their comfort zone and find help in many different departments and even off campus. The nature of this nontraditional classroom approach strengthened the soft skills of the engineering student, a value that is not tangible in the classroom. Multidisciplinary design projects are one solution to bridging the gap between graduate requirements and industry employers’ needs.

Yazdanshenas, A., & Nehls, C. N., & Goh, C. (2017, June), Multidisciplinary Design Projects in Engineering Education Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--28694

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