287161 Critical Reflections of Their Freshman Engineering Design Project

Tuesday, October 30, 2012: 5:24 PM
330 (Convention Center )
Taryn M. Bayles, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD

In a freshman level Introduction to Engineering Design course, students were required to design, construct, test and evaluate a system which would mimic the performance of a heart-lung machine.  The goal of each design was to flow the ‘blood’ at an appropriate rate through their system, which was required to oxygenate and cool the ‘blood’.  Their design also had to minimize leaks and system volume.  In addition to design, construction and testing, the teams were required to evaluate their system performance using theoretical calculations.  This project provided an introduction to transport phenomena by combining momentum, heat and mass transfer.  This freshman Introduction to Engineering Design course was composed of 200 Chemical, Computer and Mechanical Engineering students – and they worked in teams of 4-6 students to complete their designs.  

Two and a half years later, approximately forty of these students have matriculated to the Chemical Engineering program and have completed junior level courses in Transport Phenomena I (Fluids) and II (Heat and Mass Transfer).  As part of their Transport Phenomena II class, the students were given their original freshman engineering design reports and were required to provide an analysis of their design.  The analysis assignment was two-fold:  the students were required to submit a group report re-analyzing the technical merits of their heart-lung design project and the students were also required to submit an individual reflection paper. For the group report, the students worked in the original teams which included 1 to 3 members of their freshman engineering design teams.  Students who were not in the freshman design class were paired with the students with one or two members.  The group report analysis included: significance of design criteria, engineering design process and theoretical analysis of data collected. The idea behind the reflection assignment is to help the students clarify what they have studied and learned, integrate new knowledge with pervious knowledge, as well as to help them become an active and aware learner so that they can better understand how they learn.  Their reflection topics included:  the engineering design process, engineering/math/science connections and technical writing. 

This presentation will feature a brief description of the design project challenge and descriptions of solutions.  In addition, a summary of the group design analysis and the individual reflection assignments will be provided.

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See more of this Session: The Evolution of the ChE Curriculum: Towards Graduation
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