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Teaching With Technology: A Strategy For Pedagogy And Practicality Using Cae Software

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Programming for Engineering Students

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1238.1 - 10.1238.12



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Paper Authors

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Renee Rogge

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Loren Sumner

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

Teaching with Technology: A Strategy for Pedagogy and Practicality using CAE Software

Loren Sumner, Renee Rogge Mercer University / Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Engineering schools across the country face the growing challenge of adapting to rapidly changing technology. Computer aided engineering (CAE) software exemplifies this trend. The Mercer University School of Engineering initiated a three-year project to establish an engineering analysis center utilizing CAE resources in undergraduate education. Learning modules have been designed and implemented to enhance teaching of engineering fundamentals without compromising the depth or breadth of course material. An infrastructure of learning modules complements the general analysis thread in engineering education while imposing controlled exposure to CAE software. Learning modules expose students to state-of-the-art CAE tools without requiring a specialized CAE course. Encouraging the development of CAE skills, the project aims to facilitate and enhance undergraduate scholarship such as capstone senior design projects. This paper discusses the project strategies, concerns, plans for assessment, and some formative assessment results. The project reveals a practical means for faculty to begin developing and implementing active learning techniques.


The Mercer University School of Engineering (MUSE) strives to prepare graduates to serve the rapidly changing demands of practicing engineers. The faculty endeavor to bring insight and wisdom from a variety of different perspectives and appreciate the role of technology in the careers of practicing engineers. The curriculum is carefully designed to achieve specific program outcomes, including those listed under Criteria 3 of the ABET Criteria for Accrediting Engineering Programs. Criteria 3 recognizes the value of technology by stating in outcome k) that: “Engineering programs must demonstrate that their students attain an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.”

Advancements in technology continue to improve the analysis tools and capabilities of engineers. Time-consuming and tedious tasks, such as calculations with a slide rule, interpolations for fluid property values, and plotting data by hand, have been assumed by graphing calculators, powerful computers, and discipline-specific software packages. The intensive mathematical tasks required in the application of engineering principles are often better executed by a computer.

Engineering education must adapt to changes in technology and the practice of engineering or risk sending unprepared graduates into the workforce [1-3]. One notable example is the increasing prominence of computer aided engineering (CAE) tools used to simulate engineering systems. Mechanical engineering magazine articles by associate editor Thilmany [4, 5] reveal the trend for a more direct role of analysis in design via finite element simulations. Furthermore,

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ©2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Rogge, R., & Sumner, L. (2005, June), Teaching With Technology: A Strategy For Pedagogy And Practicality Using Cae Software Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--15455

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