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Teaching Techniques In Computer Aided Design

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.494.1 - 4.494.6

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Jianping Yue

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

Session 2548

Teaching Techniques in Computer-Aided Design

Jianping Yue

Department of Engineering Technology & Computer Science Essex County College Newark, New Jersey


This paper discusses common concerns about and various techniques for the teaching of Computer-Aided Design (CAD). One of the concerns raised will be related to how engineering technology students can acquire the necessary CAD skills for use in their design projects. Also discussed will be the relative advantages of different approaches, such as having CAD as a separate course, making CAD a part of design or graphics courses, and allowing students to acquire the skills on their own. Classroom lectures for the teaching of CAD software are examined and compared with self-learning by students. Another aspect to be addressed is project assignments. In addition to regular CAD drawing exercises, practical CAD design projects as well as traditional question-and-answer homework are assigned to students to enhance their understanding of the subject and to improve their CAD skills. Also, the proper mixture of CAD theory with hands-on experience, as well as the proper levels of general guidelines and specific instructions, is reviewed. In addition, the paper discusses the degree of complication that freshman CAD projects can have without overwhelming students and examines the introduction of practical exercises, such as machine parts with correct dimensioning and scale, early in the curriculum. Quizzes, written exams, and term projects are evaluated as to their usefulness in assessing the amount of understanding and skill that students have attained. Finally, the paper gives examples of the relative merits of different CAD software packages in an educational setting and raises other issues such as modern teaching equipment and the proper time to be given for the completion of projects.

Should CAD Be Included in Engineering Technology Curriculums?

Along with its fast development, CAD has virtually replaced traditional hand drafting and blueprints. Some schools even eliminated the conventional drafting boards, replacing them with regular large-sized desks. CAD courses are now required in many engineering technology programs that offer associate degrees. Since CAD software is a drafting tool, some schools do not offer a CAD course. Yet they still require students to complete their assignments or projects using CAD software with the assumption that students either have already learned CAD from somewhere else or can easily grasp it on their own. One high school teacher once said to me that

Yue, J. (1999, June), Teaching Techniques In Computer Aided Design Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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