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Should Kinetics Follow Kinematics? Investigating Course Design in Dynamics

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Dynamic Pedagogies for Engineering Dynamics

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Paper Authors


Phillip Cornwell Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

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Phillip Cornwell is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1989 and his present interests include structural dynamics, structural health monitoring, and undergraduate engineering education. Dr. Cornwell has received an SAE Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award in 1992, and the Dean’s Outstanding Teacher award at Rose-Hulman in 2000 and the Rose-Hulman Board of Trustee’s Outstanding Scholar Award in 2001. He was one of the developers of the Rose-Hulman Sophomore Engineering Curriculum, the Dynamics Concept Inventory, and he is a co-author of Vector Mechanics for Engineers: Dynamics, by Beer, Johnston, Cornwell, and Self.

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Kent Ralph Jensen USAF

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Lt Col Kent Jensen is a USAF officer who taught in the USAF Academy's Engineering Mechanics Department from 2014 to 2017. He graduated from the USAF Academy in 2000 with his Bachelors of Science Degree and from the University of Utah with his Masters of Engineering Degree in 2001. He then attended USAF pilot training and flew C-130s until 2014. He transported troops and materiel across the US, Europe, Africa and SW Asia until 2009 when he taught young pilots to fly the C-130 in Arkansas. In 2011 he moved to California to perform operational flight testing of mobility aircraft before returning to the USAF Academy to teach. He recently left the USAF Academy to oversee Hill AFB's flight, weapons and occupational safety programs in Utah.

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Kwangjin Yang United States Air Force Academy

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Kwangjin Yang received his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Korea Air Force Academy in 1996, an M.S degree in Mechanical Engineering from Pohang University of Science and Technology in 2002 and a Ph.D. degree in Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering from the University of Sydney in 2010. Currently, he is an professor of Mechanical Engineering at the Korea Air Force Academy and works as an exchange professor at the United State Air Force Academy. His research interests include path planning, UAV control, cooperative control.

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In this study, we investigated whether the reordering of kinetics and kinematics topics in a traditional dynamics course leads to improved student ability to choose and apply appropriate kinetics principles to solve single- and multi-concept dynamics problems. To test this hypothesis, three sections of Dynamics were taught using a traditional ordering of topics and one section was taught with a reordering of the topics with kinetics taught before kinematics. Students’ ability to choose and apply appropriate kinetics principles was assessed using common questions on exams, a common final exam, and an in-class questionnaire assignment administered at the beginning and end of the semester. In this study we did not see a statistically significant improvement in performance, and we were therefore not able to duplicate the results from a previous study that showed that the reordering of the topics in the context of an integrated sophomore curriculum resulted in an improvement in students’ ability to solve dynamics problems.

Cornwell, P., & Jensen, K. R., & Yang, K. (2018, June), Should Kinetics Follow Kinematics? Investigating Course Design in Dynamics Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--30962

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