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Techniques for the Implementation, Administration, and Evaluation of Industrially Sponsored Capstone Design Projects in the ME Curriculum

[+] Author Affiliations
Patricia D. Brackin, J. Darrell Gibson

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Paper No. IMECE2006-16026, pp. 323-328; 6 pages
  • ASME 2006 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Innovations in Engineering Education: Mechanical Engineering Education, Mechanical Engineering Technology Department Heads
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, November 5 – 10, 2006
  • Conference Sponsors: Mechanical Engineering Education, Mechanical Engineering Technology Department Heads
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4781-0 | eISBN: 0-7918-3790-4
  • Copyright © 2006 by ASME


The benefits of company sponsored capstone design projects, both to academia and to industry, have been well established. At Rose-Hulman the benefits to students include the broadening of their engineering skills, the required interaction with practicing engineers, the strengthening of teaming skills by working in design groups, the development of communication skills with required oral and written reports, and the experiences of project management. These projects are "owned and managed" by the student teams with company contacts providing appropriate data and information and with faculty serving as advisors only. The authors have developed and improved these student/industry interactions over the last few years with over 120 students working with about 30 different companies each year. ABET 2000 requires that graduates demonstrate the ability to design a system, component or process to meet a given need. The capstone design course is the natural place to assess whether or not the outcome is met. It is the purpose of this paper to identify the necessary steps for soliciting, screening, and selecting the types of company projects that will enhance educational objectives and further industrial partnerships. A further purpose is to demonstrate how the course is used to assess the ABET design outcome. Finally the paper discusses how the authors have recently improved this client based design experience and the quality of the final design by utilizing project managers from Rose-Hulman Ventures (the innovation and incubation technology arm of Rose-Hulman) as "design review teams" to meet with and to serve as additional resources to the student teams.

Copyright © 2006 by ASME
Topics: Design



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