June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
Design in Engineering Education
15.1141.1 - 15.1141.9
Successes of an Early Conceptual Design Presentation for Senior Design Projects Abstract
In the past, teams from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte College of Engineering two semester capstone senior design class first presented their project design at the end of the first semester. Their design consisted of a report and a poster presentation submitted to the faculty mentors, course instructors and company sponsors.
At the poster presentation (and in their report) we found that 35% of the teams did not include enough design detail and 25% had virtually no design details, which indicated they had not spent much time on the design effort. This caused project teams to start their second semester efforts behind schedule. By the end of the second semester, about 28% of all projects (but especially the late-starting projects) failed to meet their project requirements.
During the fall of 2009 we introduced a model in which each team presented the conceptual design of their project in the middle of semester one. This presentation, along with the discussion afterwards, has helped teams to focus on details of the design concept. The presentation has also given students a chance to enhance their presentation skills. The major beneficial result of the presentation is that teams are better able to complete the detailed design by the end of the first semester. Our goal from the early conceptual design presentation was to improve the quality of all projects design, and to eliminate the 25% project design failure from occurring.
Our initial results are that, based on our early focus on design instruction and presentation on design detail, nearly all teams had complete designs by the end of the first semester. Only 4% of the teams were judged as having virtually no design content, while 70% of the teams had completed designs.
The University of North Carolina at Charlotte currently offers a two-semester, multi-disciplinary senior design sequence that spans all of the departments within the College of Engineering (COE). Industry-sponsored and faculty funded research efforts comprise the projects for the senior design sequence. This is particularly advantageous for the industry sponsors, since these sponsors are afforded the opportunity to initiate elective research projects in their respective areas of interest while working closely with seniors that the company may be interested in recruiting. Students prioritize their interest in available projects through analysis of posted Statements of Work and the course instructors, who represent all departments and programs in the COE, formed groups with three to four students containing diverse talents that would be representative of a typical engineering team in industry.
Students participating in the industry sponsored senior design program are expected to produce industry-standard deliverables throughout the two-semester course. The following documents are described in earlier papers1,2,3 and include: 1. Requirements and Capabilities
BouSaba, N. N., & Conrad, J., & Gehrig, B., & Hoch, D., & Heybruck, W., & Kane, M., & Schmidt, P., & Sharer, D., & Patterson, S. (2010, June), Successes Of An Early Conceptual Design Presentation For Senior Design Projects Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--16384
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