Development and Evaluation of a Sophomore Mechanical Engineering Design Course infused with CDIO Skills

Development and Evaluation of a Sophomore Mechanical Engineering Design Course infused with CDIO Skills

[Anonymous] Development and Evaluation of a Sophomore Mechanical Engineering Design Course infused with CDIO Skills.

The Mechanical Engineering Department at the California State University at Northridge has adopted the Conceive-Design-Implement-Operate (CDIO) framework as the overall guiding philosophy in reforming its undergraduate education. An important standard to achieve in this adoption is to have several design-build project experiences in the curriculum. To spearhead this effort, one of two sessions of a sophomore design course that teaches mechanical design for manufacturing was chosen as an experimental session and was redesigned to teach a project involving designing and building yoyos, along with CDIO, personal, and interpersonal skills. Student teams go through the complete product development cycle (i.e., four phases of CDIO): conceiving innovative ideas and concepts; designing and reiterating concepts of yoyos to meet  requirements; implementing the concepts and manufacturing yoyos; and operating the yoyos in the context of safety and a yoyo-trick contest at the end of the semester. Engaging in the project helps students become proficient in using Computer Aided design/Manufacturing tools and machines (e.g., SolidWorks, Esprit, Rapid Prototyping, Injection Molding, and Computer Numeric Control machines); internalize the role of key manufacturing metrics in modern manufacturing systems; and learn personal, interpersonal, and professional skills. Results obtained through self-reporting surveys and performances on a design problem given to students in both sessions show that teaching the design-build project significantly improves students’ ability to conceive and design a product and to work in a team-based environment. The improvement in the students’ learning has resulted in adopting a design build project in all future sessions of this course. A plan for integrating this course with other core design courses, and into the Department overall plan for adopting CDIO is also discussed.

2nd International CDIO Conference, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden, 13 – 14 June 2006

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