Learning Incorporating Design and Teaming
Projects that provide inquisitive design and analysis are utilized
in a 1st-year engineering and science curriculum at the South
Dakota School of Mines and Technology to introduce students to
experimentation, data collection, analysis, technical report writing, and
presentation. Projects allow
for construction of numerical models, development of predictions, and
corroboration through experimentation.
Currently, four student projects are rotated on a yearly basis and
include design of a bungee cord , trebuchet, SEESat, and catapult.
Design parameters include opportunities for student teams to model,
test, and modify the system for optimum performance. Instrumentation for data collection is utilized during the
projects providing true integration between experimentation and analysis.
Results indicate students appreciate challenge where there are
clearly outlined outcomes and experimentation is performed with informed
supervision. Introduction to
both design methodology and empowered self-directed teams is provided
through these projects adding value to student learning in the first year.
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