Engineering Design and Development
An Engineering Design and Development (EDD) project differs from a stereotypical science fair project in that the results of the experiment can not be readily gained or "looked-up." In addition to putting great care into the methodology of testing a hypothesis, a research project requires the student to suggest and justify a unique and original solution to a problem. As an example, choosing to find the rate at which bread becomes moldy under certain conditions may be both valuable and important information to the food industry, but experiments answering questions like this have already been performed and documented thousands of times.
A true research project would involve investigating a concern or problem in the food industry that attempts to add to the industry in a positive manner. Examples might include longer lasting preservatives, more efficient methods of processing or harvesting plants, or less expensive containers in which to package the food. The task of justifying and repeating the results of another researcher's work is an extremely valuable part in determining the validity of new information or verifying the effectiveness of a given product. However, with the possible exception of determining a more effective testing method, the act of repeating any research is not original work and only serves to validate rather than add information to a given field of interest. Therefore, finding and justifying a "question" to answer, or problem to address, and carefully defining the solution to the question or problem is one of the biggest challenges of this course. Engineers or other professionals are not hired solely because they have the skills to solve problems, but more importantly because they can identify and justify problems that need solving.
The course of study includes:
- Problem Identification and Justification
- Design Process
- Innovation vs Invention
- Building and Testing a Prototype
- Engineering Drawing Standards
- CAD Solid Modeling
- Tool Safety
- Jury Presentation