Virtual On line
June 22, 2020
June 22, 2020
June 26, 2021
Design in Engineering Education
As the demand for more innovative products to help improve the lives of others increases, the product design industry continues to require more effective design methodologies. Conventional wisdom and research suggests that Computer-Aided Design (CAD) is a tool for detailed design, and is not appropriate for the conceptual phase of the design process. However, given new advances in cloud-computing and real-time synchronous collaboration, the ability to quickly digitally prototype unique concepts in CAD has never been easier. Given that new engineering graduates are part of the “digital native” generation, anecdotal evidence suggests these designers have a natural inclination and ability for this digital prototyping. Our study seeks to formally test whether a dichotomy exists between younger designers who are entering the workforce, and older designers who are veterans in product development, regarding the best-practices in CAD usage for conceptual design - “Conceptual CAD”. The paper begins with a critical review of the existing body of literature which advises the designer against Conceptual CAD. Next, we present the findings of a survey of professional product designers (spanning a variety of networks including LinkedIn and local product design think-tanks). We focus the analysis of the survey on differences in Conceptual CAD design practice by a variety of factors (e.g. years of experience with a given CAD tool, industry of practice, amount of time spent performing team vs. individual design actions, etc.), with the goal of identifying if correlation exists between designer age and inclination to use Conceptual CAD. Our study reveals important implications for engineering educators. Newly graduated engineers have advanced comfort and abilities with digital tools, and a corresponding proclivity to perform Conceptual CAD. These preferences benefit from the features of modern CAD tools, including fast collaboration and sharing. Though current introductory CAD courses are sufficient at teaching students how to use CAD, there is a recommendation for more cohesion and CAD usage in advanced design courses. Allowing more usage of CAD in more comprehensive design driven courses, can allow students to more accurately simulate the product development process in industry, and thus reduce the education to industry application gap.
Nourimand, A., & Olechowski, A. (2020, June), Prominence of Conceptual Design with Computer-Aided Design Tools for Junior and Senior Product Designers Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--35101
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: © 2020 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