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Title: Building Design Experience and a Greater Sense of Community through an Integrated Design Project
WIP: The Mechanical Engineering (ME) Department at Seattle University was awarded a 2017 NSF RED (Revolutionizing Engineering and Computer Science Departments) grant. This award provided the opportunity to create a program where students and faculty are immersed in a culture of doing engineering with practicing engineers that in turn fosters an identity of being an engineer. Of the many strategies implemented to support this goal, one significant curricular change was the creation of a new multi-year design course sequence. This set of three courses, the integrated design project (IDP) sequence, creates an annual curricular-driven opportunity for students to interact with each other and professional engineers in the context of an open-ended design project. These three courses are offered to all departmental first-, second-, and third-year students simultaneously during the spring quarter each year. Each course consists of design-focused classroom instruction tailored to that class year, and a term design project that is completed by teams of students drawn from all three class years. This structure provides students with regular design education, while also creating a curricular space for students across the department to interact with and learn from one of another in a meaningful way. This structure not only prepares more » students for their senior design experience, but also builds a sense of community and belonging in the department. Furthermore, to support the "engineering with engineers" vision, volunteer engineers from industry participate as consultants in the design project activities, giving students the opportunity to learn from professionals regularly throughout their entire four years in the program. This course sequence was offered for the first time in 2020, and while the global pandemic impacted the experience, the initial offering was by all accounts a success. This paper provides an overview of the motivation for the three IDP courses, their format, objectives, and specific implementation details, and a discussion of some of the lessons learned. These particulars provide other engineering departments with a roadmap for how to implement this type of a curricular experience in their own programs. « less
Authors:
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Award ID(s):
1730354
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10335057
Journal Name:
Proceedings Frontiers in Education Conference
ISSN:
0190-5848
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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