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Robots! - Introduction to Engineering and Computer Science

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

Innovative Use of Technology in K-12 Outreach

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

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Paper Authors


Steven F Barrett University of Wyoming

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Dr. Steven F. Barrett, P.E., received the B.S. in Electronic Engineering Technology from the University of Nebraska at Omaha in 1979, the M.E.E.E. from the University of Idaho at Moscow in 1986, and the Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin in 1993. He was formally an active duty faculty member and professor at the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado and is now professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and associate dean for Academic Programs, College of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Wyoming. He is a senior member of IEEE and chief faculty advisor of Tau Beta Pi. His research interests include digital and analog image processing, computer-assisted laser surgery, and embedded control systems. He is a registered professional engineer in Wyoming and Colorado. He authored/co-authored several textbooks on microcontrollers and embedded systems. His book, “A Little Book on Teaching,” was published by Morgan and Claypool Publishers in 2012. In 2004, Barrett was named “Wyoming Professor of the Year” by the Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching and in 2008 was the recipient of the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) Professional Engineers in Higher Education, Engineering Education Excellence Award.

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Jeffrey R Anderson University of Wyoming

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Jeffrey R. Anderson received his PhD in electrical and computer engineering at the University of Wyoming with a research emphasis in image processing in 2004. He received his BS and ME from the University of Utah in 1989 and 1992, respectively. He has worked on a closed loop controller for mechanical ventilation of patients with adult respiratory distress syndrome. Additionally, he has worked on a servo lung simulator with related control method that was awarded a U.S. patent. He is currently an associate academic professional at the University of Wyoming in the Electrical and Computer Engineering department.

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Matthew Young Lionel Love University of Wyoming

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Senior Undergraduate Student at the University of Wyoming, who expects to graduate in May 2016 with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a B.A. in Spanish

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For close to three decades, [state] rising sophomore students have had the opportunity to have their first taste of college life while attending the [University Name] Summer High School Institute. For over ten years we have team taught two courses to expose students to computer hardware and software programming techniques. We were challenged to combine the course into a single offering. Our goal was to develop an intensive, hands-on, motivational experience where each student would build, program, and develop the interface between the programming board and the robot hardware. We hoped that along the way the students would learn about different engineering fields, computer science, and also the basics of computer programming and interfacing. The course concluded with a robot competition. Students competed to see which robot could go through an unknown maze without bumping into maze walls in the shortest time. The course objectives included: 1) Take the mystery out of engineering and computing, 2) Show that engineering and computer science is fun and exciting, 3) Demonstrate that engineering is for both women and men, 4) Emphasize hands-on, learn by doing exercises, and 5) Inform students of the excellent educational opportunities at the University of _________. For the course a low cost Dagu Magician robot kit was used. Each student built their own robot. The robot was equipped with infrared sensors and an Arduino UNO R3 processor board. The Arduino processor was specifically designed for use by students without a technical background. They are easy to use and program. Students completed a pre- and post-course survey to determine their level of understanding in a number of course concepts. A substantial increase in student understanding was noted.

Barrett, S. F., & Anderson, J. R., & Love, M. Y. L. (2016, June), Robots! - Introduction to Engineering and Computer Science Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26121

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