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Use Of Senior Mini Project For Electrical And Computer Engineering Curriculum Assessment

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.1094.1 - 6.1094.10

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Paper Authors

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Brian Huggins

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Winfred K Anakwa

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Gary Dempsey

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

Session 3232

Use of Senior Mini-Project for Electrical and Computer Engineering Curriculum Assessment

Gary Dempsey, Brian Huggins, and Winfred Anakwa Bradley University, Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering


Although many mechanisms exist for engineering course assessments such as teacher/course evaluations, homework and test results, and student office visits, developing new mechanisms for curriculum assessment can be difficult to implement and analyze. This paper discusses the six-week mini-project for senior students in the Electrical and Computer Engineering program at Bradley University. Use of the mini-project to increase the design content in our curriculum has been in place for ten years. The results have been used successfully to implement course, laboratory, and curriculum modifications. The paper will discuss the small products developed, curriculum modifications, project development time and costs, and how the mini-project will be used in the new Engineering Criteria 2000 accreditation process.

I. Introduction

The six-week senior mini-project is a small but vital component of our Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) undergraduate laboratory sequence at Bradley University. The laboratory program consists of a five semester sequence of independent lab courses culminating in a capstone design project in the last one and one-half semesters. The mini project, which has been used since 1991, has been a valuable tool to assess students, curriculum, and laboratory facilities deficiencies. A new mini- project is developed each year which is a small product design that can be completed in a six-week period by two students. From a student point of view, the primary objective of the mini project is to design a product or instrument given a set of specifications.

Our department is preparing for our first ABET visit under the new Engineering Criteria (EC) 2000 guidelines. The paper will show how we are using this design project to satisfy items in Criteria 3: Program Outcomes and Assessment 1. The paper is divided into the following eight sections: brief description of our laboratory program, mini-project description and grading methods, mini-project history, mini-project as an assessment tool, curriculum modifications, mini-project development time and costs, 1999 mini-project, and concluding remarks.

Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ©2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Huggins, B., & Anakwa, W. K., & Dempsey, G. (2001, June), Use Of Senior Mini Project For Electrical And Computer Engineering Curriculum Assessment Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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