Discipline: Technology and Engineering
Subcategory: STEM Research
Yaqi Wanyan - Texas Southern University
Co-Author(s): David Olowokere and Xuemin Chen, Texas Southern University
This project seeks to infuse innovative electrical/computer engineering specialized Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools into traditional engineering problem-solving routines by problem-based learning (PBL) approach to bridge current curricula gap in the Department of Engineering at Texas Southern University (TSU). Two newly implemented undergraduate engineering programs of the Department are Civil Engineering (CE) and Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE). Currently, junior and senior CE curriculum (300 and 400 level) focus exclusively on conventional mathematics, physics, and/or engineering methods for core engineering design and analysis courses, and these classical curricula are highly specialized into different sub disciplines such as environmental engineering, transportation engineering, structural engineering and construction engineering and management. On the other hand, ECE major students learn AI theories and algorithms in depth but lack real case engineering applications in their curriculum to fully appreciate the knowledge they are learning. The overall goal is to fill the gap by developing new technology rich curricula to increase students’ awareness of the need for the knowledge, which in return enhances the learning outcome. There are five key objectives: 1) Develop an interactive and comprehensive intelligent database to document, compare, and analyze cutting-edge AI applications in CE field and use it as the platform and educational media for curricula development and implementation; 2) Develop one new interdisciplinary curriculum ‘AI Tools for Engineering Problem Solving’ for both CE and ECE students as senior elective course; 3) Enrich current curricula by integrating innovative AI application case studies into twelve existing CE junior and senior level courses; and adopting knowledge automation software into one existing senior ECE course; 4) Foster interdisciplinary academic setting by hosting server-based intelligent database and provide web- and classroom-based workshops and tutorials for all interested students and faculty; 5) Support undergraduate students’ early involvement in research. The project activities will impact more than 400 under-represented minority undergraduate students in the Department of Engineering to promote learning interests, stimulate cognitive process, emphasis underlying engineering problem-solving activities, enhance academic infrastructure and to foster an interdisciplinary setting that reflects the multi-disciplinary nature of many engineering processes. The infusion of innovative theories and practical applications will improve engineering students’ critical thinking skills, thus better prepare them as competent engineers. The proposed activities will also have a significant impact on how new technologies are taught in old-fashioned engineering field such as civil engineering and how students learn these concepts.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): NSF HBCU-UP Targeted Infusion Award HRD1533569
Faculty Advisor: None Listed,