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Engineer Grand Challenges (FSE 150)

Engineer Grand Challenges (FSE 150)

Perspectives on Grand Challenges for Engineering

Are you excited about new technologies that impact every facet of our lives? Are you concerned about the many problems, big or small, faced by our communities on planet earth, and want to help? This course is for you!

This course will provide you with opportunities to explore the global challenges facing society, and to learn about how engineers are making an effort to address these challenges. It will serve as a first step to prepare you to become a well rounded Engineer who is ready to tackle these challenges.

You will hear from experts in many engineering fields talking about the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges for Engineering and their groundbreaking research that is impacting communities of all sizes across the globe. Through this course, you will be equipped with an Entrepreneurial Mindset that complements the technical engineering skill set and drives innovation. The entrepreneurial mindset focuses on exercising your curiosity about the surrounding world in order to identify opportunities, make connections, and create real value for society. This course is also an active introduction to developing an interdisciplinary systems perspective, a new way of thinking and problem solving that is important to address these challenges. Through discussions and activities, you will actively explore how engineering solutions and technologies can be affected by and impact various aspects of society including economics, politics, environment, culture, and human behavior.

What you’ll learn

  • Develop an interdisciplinary understanding of the global engineering Grand Challenges that human societies face in the 21st century
  • Describe the NAE Grand Challenges themes, and learn about ongoing research in all Grand Challenge theme areas.
  • Identify opportunities to create added value in the Grand Challenge areas, and apply customer focused design and an entrepreneurial mindset to conceptualize a potential future solution.
  • Interpret why (and in what ways) a technology or design solution adds value from multiple perspectives (technological, sociocultural, economic, environmental, global, etc.), and describe a design solution in terms of its societal value (as well as its technical features and function).
  • Demonstrate an awareness of societal issues (e.g. sociocultural, political, economic, environmental) that influence and/or constrain engineering solutions.

What to expect in class

Video lectures, readings, projects, graded activities, discussions, an ePortfolio, and.live meetings with the instructor.

Exams and grading

  • 40% - Projects (2)
  • 25% - ePortfolio
  • 20% - Activities (15)
  • 15% - Graded Discussions

University Credits: 
3 credits
CMASAS Credits: 
1 credit (CTE)
Instructor-led (8 weeks)
Start Dates: 
Jan 10, 2023