'Create the future': an environment for excellence in teaching future-oriented Industrial Design Engineering

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In 2001, the University of Twente started a new course on Industrial Design Engineering. This paper describes the insights that have been employed in developing the curriculum, and in developing the environment in which the educational activities are facilitated. The University of Twente has a broad experience with project-oriented education [1], and because one of the goals of the curriculum is to get the students acquainted with working methods as employed in e.g. design bureaus, this project-oriented approach has been used as the basis for the new course. In everyday practice, this implies a number of prerequisites to be imposed on the learning environment: instead of focusing on the sheer transfer of information, this environment must allow the students to imbibe the knowledge and competences that make them better designers. Consequently, a much more flexible environment has to be created, in which working as a team becomes habitual, and where cutting-edge technologies are available to facilitate the process. This can be realized because every student owns a laptop, with all relevant software and a full-grown course management system within reach. Moreover, the learning environment provides the fastest possible wireless network and Internet access available [2]. This obviously has its repercussions on the way the education is organized. On the one hand, e.g. virtual reality tools, CAD software and 3D printing are addressed in the curriculum, whereas on the other hand more traditional techniques (like sketching and model making) are conveyed explicitly as well. Together with a sound footing in basic disciplines ranging from mathematics to design history, this course offers the students a profound education in Industrial Design Engineering. The paper describes in more detail the curriculum and the education environment, based on which it is assessed if the course on Industrial Design Engineering can live up to its motto: ‘Create the future’, and what can be done to further enable the students to acquire the full denotation of that motto.
Original languageUndefined
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Event2nd International Engineering and Product Design Education Conference, IEPDE 2004 - University of Delft, Delft
Duration: 2 Sep 20043 Sep 2004
Conference number: 2


Conference2nd International Engineering and Product Design Education Conference, IEPDE 2004
Abbreviated titleIEPDE


  • Project oriented education
  • future studies
  • digital learning environment
  • IR-60561

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