Larochelleetal

Larochelleetal - An Innovative Introduction to Mechanical...

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2003 ASME CURRICULUM INNOVATION AWARD HONORABLE MENTION www.asme.org/education/enged/awards Pierre M. Larochelle , Member Associate Professor Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Florida Institute of Technology Melbourne, FL 32901 [email protected] John J. Engblom , Member Professor and Department Head Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Florida Institute of Technology Melbourne, FL 32901 [email protected] Hector Gutierrez , Assistant Professor Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Florida Institute of Technology Melbourne, FL 32901 [email protected] An Innovative Introduction to Mechanical Engineering: A Cornerstone Design Experience In 1997 a major overhaul of the introductory experience to Mechanical Engineering at Florida Tech was initiated. The purpose of this overhaul was to develop an experience that would serve to: (1) prepare students for the ME curriculum, (2) motivate students to complete their studies, (3) provide students with academic success skills, and (4) introduce students to the engineering profession. The format chosen to realize this goal is a yearlong sequence of two courses that freshman take entitled Introduction to Mechanical Engineering i (MAE1022 Fall, 2 credits) and ii (MAE1023 Spring, 1 credit). This sequence is a project-motivated experience inspired by traditional capstone design courses. In the fall students are taught basic academic success skills such as time management, study skills, working in study groups, self-motivation, and goal setting. Next, a major team-based design project is assigned. This is immediately followed by an introduction to basic design theory and methodology including brainstorming techniques. Students then learn the skills they need in order to complete the design: computer-aided design via Pro/ENGINEER, basic machine shop skills, generating dimensioned production drawings, project management including timelines and Gantt charts, project budgeting, and documentation. The major assignment in the fall course is the design proposal that each team prepares. In the spring course student teams complete their designs, fabricate functioning devices, and demonstrate these devices to the campus community. Introduction: The reconstructing of the Introduction to Mechanical Engineering experience at Florida Tech was motivated by a recognition that more could and should be done for our students. It was decided early on that a traditional introductory course that provides an overview of ME technical subject areas was not desirable. Such an overview approach does not serve the needs of the freshmen students nor does it prepare them for their future course work. These technical topics are most effectively covered in detail in the traditional engineering sciences courses (e.g. statics, fluids, thermo). Instead, a thorough review of the state of the art in pedagogy [1-23] identified some basic themes that would be adhered to in formulating a new Introduction to Mechanical Engineering experience. These themes are evident in the
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This note was uploaded on 01/01/2012 for the course AOE 5984 taught by Professor Devenport during the Fall '08 term at Virginia Tech.

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Larochelleetal - An Innovative Introduction to Mechanical...

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