Engineering Fundamentals 111 Overview

Dr. Patricia RalstonBeginning in the Fall of 2016, the Department of Engineering Fundamentals offered the first courses in their bid to get introductory level students engaged in hands on activities. ENGR110 was updated as a precursor to the ENGR111, which offered the hands on component, with the two working in tandem to show, not tell engineering principles, by giving students the opportunity to work on them in a group setting with a visible outcome at the end. The result of two years of planning, ENGR 111 was taught by Professor Brian Robinson, who designed the course to culminate in the creation of a functioning wind turbine. 

According to Dr. Patricia Ralston, chair of the EF department, the time was right for a change in direction. 

"What is really unique about this course is the fact that it is taught in the EG, which is close to FirstBuild. We were actually long overdue in offering more 'hands-on' opportunities for students, because many engineering colleges had done so for years. Why now was an opportune time for us to accomplish this was the creation of the EG," says Ralston.

Continuing she adds, "From all the feedback I have gotten from students and instructors, and from my direct observation of the student final projects and a drop-in visit, I think it was a success! We already have plans to make this first project more "real-world" by incorporating PLCs (programmable logic controllers). Eventually, we want students to have a variety of projects from which to choose."

Courses are already under way for the Fall of 2017, which features ENGR110. To learn more, read feedback from Professor Robinson and a few students below.