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Senior Eet Design Projects To Aid Individuals With Disabilities

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.488.1 - 3.488.5



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Paper Authors

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Henry G. Ansell

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1547

Senior EET Design Projects to Aid Individuals with Disabilities Henry G. Ansell Penn State Berks-Lehigh Valley College


There are engineering programs throughout the U.S. that offer senior design courses involving projects to aid individuals with disabilities, but technology programs that do this are rarer. This paper discusses experience with technology students doing successful client-based senior design projects to aid individuals with disabilities. It explains how projects were chosen and how funding was obtained.


During the fall 1996 semester at Penn State Berks Campus (now part of Penn State Berks-Lehigh Valley College) preparations were made for a technology senior design project course scheduled for the following semester. The students were in the Berks Campus evening BS EET Program (extended from Penn State Harrisburg). This program had run at Penn State Berks Campus several years earlier, and students at that time had considerable latitude in writing specifications for their projects. At that earlier time there had been two sections, each involving a different instructor, including this author. In some cases the students made an effort but did not achieve a prototype; in other cases a device was made but was not sufficiently advanced to be really useful to anyone.

For the 1996-1997 academic year, this author wanted to have the students do a design that was client-based in order to provide a more realistic experience for students. It was announced to the students that each senior design project was to be a device to aid an individual with a disability. A satisfactory working prototype was to be made and delivered to an individual for his or her use.

The literature includes reports of engineering students, sometimes in collaboration with others, doing design projects to aid individuals with disabilities1-7. This instructor felt that baccalaureate technology students could also successfully do senior design projects to help people with disabilities.

Team Formation

Teams for the project were formed in fall 1996. When this program was given previously at Berks Campus, the design teams typically had two people per team, and in some cases only one person. However, in fall 1996, in order to have a greater probability of the success of the projects, this instructor decided to have four persons per team. There were twelve students in the class, and this instructor, who was also coordinator of the BS EET program at Berks Campus, decided that there would be one section of projects with three teams of four students per team.

Ansell, H. G. (1998, June), Senior Eet Design Projects To Aid Individuals With Disabilities Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/1-2--7397

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