The mechanical engineering design curriculum of one university (MIT) is outlined. The sophomore level Introduction to Design course and the senior level Design Projects course are described in more detail, and compared and criticized.

The challenge of design education is ascribed to two sources: (a) the reach of design development that is expected of the students, and (b) the difficulty of providing adequate feedback to the students. It is proposed that (i) the limitations on the science based undergraduate curriculum for providing a professional education in design be formally recognized, and that there be a clearer understanding of what a graduating engineer is expected to be capable of, and what is to be provided by graduate school and/or company based on-the-job training programs; (ii) that established principles of design be taught at appropriate stages in the undergraduate curriculum to the extent that they match the students’ design development and experience; and (iii) that undergraduate design courses incorporate projects in which students’ designs are manifested in hardware to provide an effective complement to the feedback provided by the faculty teaching the course.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.