Introduction to Engineering Design

Science & Technology
Course Code
ENGR 1190
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Method(s) Of Instruction
Typically Offered


Course Description
This course is a second course in engineering design. Students will work in teams to complete a semester-long project consisting of several milestone stages. Through completion of an open-ended project, students will gain experience with the entire engineering design process and exposure to the challenges of project management. An introduction to the engineering code of ethics and ethical decision making will be included.
Course Content

Students will work in teams to complete a semester-long project consisting of several milestone stages. In particular, the project will include the following:

  • Mechanical design project: Students will design a maze in which a programmable robot will autonomously maneuver from start to end with no human intervention. Students will work in teams to take a design from problem definition and constraint identification (including two right-angle turns), through conceptual and preliminary design, to the construction of a prototype. Each team will present a maze design to their peers, and all teams will collectively decide upon on the the most time- and resource- efficient design for use in the final project.
  • Programming projects: Through several projects using C and Matlab scripting, teams of students will design, construct and program an autonomous robot to perform specific tasks. A robot kit and related accessories (microprocessors, various motors and sensors) will be provided. These projects will provide students with a knowledge of sensors and experience with the data extraction process from sensor output. Students will implement closed-loop linear control systems based on sensor output for more accurate control of motors. Some examples of projects are:
    o Autonomous double right turn angle maneuver through a maze
    o Following a colored line path
    o Moving along a spiral path
  • Final Project: Teams of students will work together to fabricate a maze based on the mechanical design project. In addition, each team will complete a comprehensive coding project to progam a robot to autonomously navigate through the maze. In this project, students will deliver a multi-disciplinary project comprised of mechanical, electrical, programming and computer sub-systems. Each team will give a presentation and navigation demonstration, and prepare a report covering their use of engineering design principles within the project.

Students will provide appropriate documentation (written reports, poster presentations, oral presentation, etc.) of their designs and of the design process that has been followed at each stage. Students will also be introduced to ethics in the context of engineering, and have the opportunity to implement ethical behavior practices in the context of a team design project.

The Engineering Design Process

  • Project statement and needs assessment
  • Project management
  • Risk management
  • Background research
  • Brainstorming and concept generation
  • Application of engineering and scientific principles
  • Prototyping, testing and evaluation
  • The decision making process
  • Assessment of internal and external design constraints
  • Communication and documentation of designs

The Engineering Practice and Engineering Ethics

  • The engineering code of ethics, ethical behavior and conflict resolution
  • Ethical decision making in engineering design
  • Teamwork best practices, including professionalism and communication
  • Technical reporting, oral presentations, written reports

Engineering Fundamentals

  • Mechanical design: Tolerancing, CAD, materials, fabrication processes and tools
  • Control algorithm design and implementation
  • Sensors and data extraction
  • C and Matlab programming
  • Feedback loops, PID controllers and closed loop control
Learning Activities

Lectures and labs

Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with the Douglas College Evaluation Policy. The instructor will present a written course outline with specific evaluation criteria at the beginning of the semester. Evaluation will be based on the following criteria:

Participation: 0-5%
Quizzes: 0-10%
Assignments: 10-25%
Mechanical design project: 10-20%
Programming projects: 10-25%
Final project: 15-30%
Midterm examination(s): 15-20%
Final examination: 25-35%

NOTE: A student must pass the final exam in order to pass the course.

Learning Outcomes

After completing this course, the successful student will be able to:

  • Apply the engineering design process to develop a solution to an open-ended design problem
  • Assess stated needs/requirements to develop a design problem statement that addresses the core need/requirement
  • Undertake research to identify background information relevant to a design project
  • Apply creative thinking methods to develop innovative solutions for engineering design problems
  • Apply formal decision making methods to assist in choosing between alternative conceptual designs
  • Follow a structured process to design a system comprised of electrical, mechanical, computer and software sub-systems
  • Apply discipline-specific technical knowledge in the engineering design process, and demonstrate understanding of the relevance of that knowledge to professional practice
  • Follow an iterative process to fabricate a physical model or prototype of a design by applying engineering design principles which include: needs assessments, design constraints evaluation, brainstorming and alternative design assessment, modeling and optimization, modifications and improvements, reporting and communication of design outcomes
  • Use relevant engineering tools (such as hand tools, fabrication tools and/or software) to create and test a prototype or physical model of an engineering design
  • Work in a team to complete programming exercises and projects designed to provide the opportunity to practice principles of engineering design
  • Demonstrate and apply algorithmic thinking by using flowcharts and pseudocode
  • Implement algorithms with C and Matlab scripting in the operating system of an autonomous robot
  • Implement complex control tasks involving real-time sensor readings and actuator control
  • Demonstrate and implement effective teamwork skills and professional conduct practices toward the successful accomplishment of an engineering design project
  • Apply appropriate tools for effective management of time and resources in the context of an engineering design project
  • Prepare and deliver effective poster presentations, oral presentations and written technical reports
  • Apply considerations of ethics when developing solutions to engineering design problems
  • Demonstrate ethical behavior and describe the importance of engineering codes of ethics, at both the student and professional level
  • Recognize the expectation of life-long learning and continuing professional development within the field of engineering
Textbook Materials

Consult the Douglas College Bookstore for the latest required textbooks and materials. Example textbooks and materials may include:

  • Dym, C.L. and Little, P., Engineering Design: A Project Based Introduction, current edition, Wiley
  • Yowell, J.L. and Carlson, D.W., Eds., Introductory Engineering Design: A Projects-Based Approach,
    current edition, Textbook for GEEN 1400: First-Year Engineering Projects and GEEN 3400: Innovation
    and Invention, ITL Program and Laboratory, College of Engineering and Applied Science, University of
    Colorado Boulder, 2000
  • Design tools such as SketchUp


Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

These are for current course guidelines only. For a full list of archived courses please see

Institution Transfer Details for ENGR 1190
Alexander College (ALEX) ALEX SCIE 1XX (3)
Athabasca University (AU) AU COMP 3XX (3)
Coast Mountain College (CMTN) CMTN ENGR 122 (2)
College of New Caledonia (CNC) CNC APSC 1XX (3)
College of the Rockies (COTR) COTR ENGR 102 (3)
Columbia College (COLU) COLU APSC 1st (4)
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU APSC 1124 (1) & KPU APSC 1299 (3)
LaSalle College Vancouver (LCV) LCV GD 1XX (3)
North Island College (NIC) DOUG ENGR 1110 (3) & DOUG ENGR 1190 (4) = NIC ENR 100 (2) & NIC ENR 101 (2)
Okanagan College (OC) No credit
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU MSE 112 (3)
Simon Fraser University (SFU) DOUG ENGR 1110 (3) & DOUG ENGR 1190 (4) = SFU SEE 100 (3) & SFU SEE 111 (4)
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU NATS 1XX (3)
University Canada West (UCW) UCW SCIE 1XX (3)
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) DOUG ENGR 1110 (3) & DOUG ENGR 1190 (4) = UBCV APSC_V 100 (3) & UBCV APSC_V 101 (3)
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC ENGR 1XX (1)
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV ENGR 124 (4)
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC ENGR 121 (1)

Course Offerings

Summer 2024