Saturday, June 2, 2012

Learning to Design: Authenticity, Negotiation, and Innovation (Svihla, Petrosino, and Diller, 2012)

The following article was recently published in the International Journal of Engineering Education. The article's lead author is my colleague Dr. Vanessa Svihla and my fellow co-author is Dr. Ken Diller. I believe this work makes a significant contribution to the incorporation of engineering principles into project based instruction, focusing specifically on the idea of design. As many of you know, engineering design is a collaborative and complex process, and our understanding of how to support student teams in learning to design remains limited. By considering in-situ student design teams in a capstone biomedical engineering course, we are afforded the opportunity to contrast two version of a non-sponsored project, then consider expert perceptions of their later sponsored designs. Findings indicate that a redesigned project led students to value customer needs and to use them to define the design problem, whereas in a kit-based version this did not occur. We also found that greater perceived opportunities to negotiate one's understanding within a team predicted more innovative designs. -Dr. Petrosino
Svihla, Petrosino Diller (2012) Learning to Design