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Trend Analysis of Capstone Design Projects for Improving Undergraduate Engineering Education

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Green Renewable Energy and Engineering Technology

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.1377.1 - 25.1377.10



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Paper Authors


Muhammad Zafrul Hasan Texas A&M University

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Muhammad Zafrul Hasan received the B.Sc. in electrical and electronic engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. He received the master's of electronic engineering from Eindhoven University of Technology (The Netherlands) under a Philips postgraduate scholarship program. He subsequently held several faculty positions in an engineering college and in a university in Malaysia. He obtained the Ph.D. in computer engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology. He was awarded the NJIT Hashimoto Fellowship in the academic year 2005-06. He is currently an Assistant Professor of engineering technology and industrial distribution at TAMU. His research interests include the design, implementation, and testing of embedded systems for energy conservation, dynamically reconfigurable computing systems, performance evaluation of computer architectures, and behavioral synthesis and testing of digital systems applied to emerging areas.

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Trend Analysis of Capstone Design Projects for Improving Undergraduate Engineering EducationAbstractCapstone design project is a major component of undergraduate engineering education. Itprovides an opportunity for the graduating students to combine several engineering principlesand practices into a functional prototype in order to meet some customer requirements or to solvea technical challenge. In order to enhance the capstone design experience of the students, it isnecessary to analyze the projects carried out over a sufficiently long time. Projects can beanalyzed based on several criterions. Criterions could be its source of sponsorship, technologybeing used in the project, and its field of application. Also, such an analysis needs to look at thepreparatory ingredients of the curriculum in the lower level that lead to the capstone designproject. A mini project in a course can be an important contributor for a capstone design project.A mini project is one that combines several concepts/topics within that course into a small designor implementation unit. Usually a mini project spans over a few weeks and includes a reportand/or presentation. A respectable credit is assigned for such a project within a course. Acurriculum that contains several courses with mini projects in earlier years of education wouldhelp students prepare well for the capstone design project. If these mini projects of differentcourses are designed coherently, the experienced gained by the students is significant. As such,the mini projects undertaken by the students in a curriculum need careful consideration in orderto have relevance and impact on the capstone design project. This paper attempts such a studyand an analysis of the mini projects as well as capstone design projects carried out at Electronicsand Telecommunications engineering program of Texas A & M University. Such analysis shedslight on the strengths that need to be maintained as well as weaknesses that need to be overcome.This paper focuses on identification of recent trend in the capstone projects. It also examines thecorrelation between mini projects and capstone design projects in the curriculum. It concludeswith recommendations for enhancing student experience in such undertakings. 

Hasan, M. Z. (2012, June), Trend Analysis of Capstone Design Projects for Improving Undergraduate Engineering Education Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--22134

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