June 24, 2017
June 24, 2017
June 28, 2017
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
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2017 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015