Incorporating Research into Undergraduate Design Courses: A Patent-centered Approach

Dirk Schaefer, Jitesh H. Panchal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (SciVal)


It is well known and widely accepted that the integration of research and teaching in a problem-based educational setting helps to foster deep learning among students. In this paper, we describe how a patent n a rotary diesel engine, which had failed to work in practice, was used to link undergraduate research and teaching activities by orchestrating two design courses around this
patent. Learning outcomes, course goals, content as well as assignments and projects were defined based on constructive alignment. Students’ performance was assessed using so-called assessment rubrics, based on Bloom’s taxonomy, which were specifically developed for both courses. After introducing the educational framework for this approach to enhancing student learning, we explain how both courses were designed and delivered in order to meet the higher-level educational outcomes envisaged. The paper closes with an overview of both our experiences and those of our students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98-110
JournalInternational Journal of Mechanical Engineering Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Machine design
  • computer-aided design
  • problem-based learning
  • undergraduate research
  • Patents


Dive into the research topics of 'Incorporating Research into Undergraduate Design Courses: A Patent-centered Approach'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this