June 16, 2002
June 16, 2002
June 19, 2002
7.1249.1 - 7.1249.7
Using an Advanced Mechanics of Materials Design Project to Enhance Learning in an Introductory Mechanics of Materials Course
Wendy C. Crone
Department of Engineering Physics, Engineering Mechanics Program University of Wisconsin-Madison
Design projects and experiments demonstrating mechanics concepts are two ways in which learning can be enhanced in undergraduate mechanics courses. This paper will discuss incorporation of these concepts in two mechanics of materials courses at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. Students in an Advanced Mechanics of Materials course were assigned a design project in which they created new table-top demonstrations and classroom experiments for the introductory level Mechanics of Materials course. The design project involved the development and construction of a table-top experiment or demonstration suitable for instruction in Mechanics of Materials. A written report, including instructions for use, descriptions of suggested demonstrations and experiments, and a thorough mechanics analysis of the device constructed, was required. In addition to providing the Advanced Mechanics of Materials students with a good open-ended design experience that reinforced introductory topics and helped the students to develop the advanced skills being studied in the course, some wonderful teaching demonstrations were created for the introductory Mechanics of Materials course. With a minimal supplies budget of $500, students created 9 projects, which addressed topics such as temperature effects, elastoplastic bending, and stress concentration. After the Advanced Mechanics of Materials course was completed, a guide was developed for instructors of the Mechanics of Materials course based on the students' project reports. In later semesters, the table-top demonstrations and classroom experiments served as a teaching aid in two introductory courses on mechanics of materials.
Tabletop demonstrations and classroom experiments enhance student learning of topics such as mechanics of materials. Several such demonstrations and experiments have been used by the author during lectures for an introductory course in Mechanics of Materials. Student comments on course evaluations have been very positive about the educational value of these teaching tools. One student remarked that "Demonstrations are helpful, because you can see what's happening." After example problems, demonstrations are frequently cited as one of the most beneficial aspects of the class.
Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright© 2002, American Society for Engineering Education
Crone, W. (2002, June), Using An Advanced Mechanics Of Materials Design Project To Enhance Learning In An Introductory Mechanics Of Materials Course Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10058
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