Symbiotic Approach to Teaching Process Control and Instrumentation

  • Shull, Peter J. (PI)
  • Rehg, James J.A. (CoPI)
  • Coffman, Lisa L.M. (CoPI)
  • Wise, John J.C. (CoPI)

Project: Research project

Project Details


Engineering - Engineering Technology (58)

This project is developing an interdisciplinary, team-taught block of courses to train engineering technology students in industrial-level process control equipment and associated systems integration. These courses are also instilling advanced communication skills necessary for quality performance in a technical and professional environment. Target Audience/Diversity consists of students coming from five counties designated by Congress as part of Appalachia, i.e. a population underrepresented among the college-going population. This population is largely comprised of first generation college students of whom about 20% are returning adult students.

The project is addressing the following problems:

a. Curriculum provides inadequate training on realistic industrial-level equipment due to

design limitations, dated technology, and the large learning curve.

b. Inadequate communication skills limit students in understanding, recording, and

referencing the hierarchical concepts needed to negotiate the equipment complexities.

In addressing these problems, a three-member faculty team (two engineering professors/one English professor) will adapt an interdisciplinary approach implemented by three institutions (Drexel University, Texas A&M University, and Arizona State University, all members of a NSF-funded coalition) to improve engineering education. The modified approach integrates four required and one optional course in engineering technology and English into a three-semester sequence, with courses collaboratively taught.

The objectives\outcomes of the project consist of:

a. Training engineering technology students in industrial-level equipment and systems


b. Using technical writing training to improve learning on technical equipment.

c. Cross-training faculty on the pedagogical models.

d. Disseminating resulting course plans and laboratory design materials via professional

journals, workshops\website, and conferences.

e. Providing an exemplary approach for writing-intensive courses in other disciplines.

Effective start/end date1/1/022/28/06


  • National Science Foundation: $72,067.00


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