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On Teaching Functionality and Functional Modeling in an Engineering Curriculum

[+] Author Affiliations
Robert L. Nagel

James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA

Matt R. Bohm

University of Louisville, Louisville, KY

Paper No. DETC2011-47852, pp. 625-636; 12 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 7: 5th International Conference on Micro- and Nanosystems; 8th International Conference on Design and Design Education; 21st Reliability, Stress Analysis, and Failure Prevention Conference
  • Washington, DC, USA, August 28–31, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5484-6
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


This paper reviews functional representation and modeling across multiple domains of engineering as well as function recognition and modeling in the engineering design field. Various modeling techniques are presented along with approaches to model realization published in common engineering design text books. Specifically, within the field of engineering design, seven published approaches for modeling function are presented: 1.) Glass Box Method; 2.) Function Analysis System Technique; 3.) Systematic Processes; 4.) Enumeration; 5.) Zen Approach; 6.) Reverse Engineering; and 7.) Function-Means Trees. Through discussion of the modeling approaches the authors pose questions on how function should be taught in undergraduate engineering curriculum. Finally, the potential benefits of function-based design approaches are reviewed and discussed.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME
Topics: Modeling , Teaching



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