Assessing the impact of an engineering design workshop on Colombian engineering undergraduate students

Camilo Vieira, Roberto Aguas, Molly Hathaway Goldstein, Şenay Purzer, Alejandra J. Magana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Engineers iteratively apply their disciplinary knowledge to develop solutions to ill-defined problems considering varying and often competing criteria and constraints. Design is a process engineers use to solve ill-defined problems necessary to fulfill human needs. While worldwide institutions are increasingly introducing engineering design in undergraduate engineering education, the extent of integration of design into the curriculum ocurr at varying degrees. In this study we focus on a higher education institution in Colombia through a single case design. We specifically evaluated the effect of a workshop designed to introduce engineering design to engineering students in a context where there have been limited initiatives and resources to introduce engineering design. Two groups of students from different engineering programs in a public university in the Colombian Caribbean region participated in an eight-hour workshop. The workshop involved a design challenge of creating a net-zero energy house using a CAD tool. The two groups were comprised of 20 systems engineering students and 25 industrial engineering students. Pre- and post- instruments were collected and analyzed to assess the effect of the workshop on students' understanding about engineering, disciplinary knowledge, and effective practices of engineering design. The results suggest that the design workshops employing CAD simulations can support engineering education in three ways by: (1) broadening student knowledge about the engineering practice; (2) fostering the acquisition disciplinary content knowledge; and (3) increasing student proficiency regarding engineering design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1972-1983
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • CAD
  • Colombia
  • Energy3D
  • Engineering design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Engineering(all)

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