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Introduction to Engineering Design

Course Code: ENGR 1190
Faculty: Science & Technology
Department: Engineering
Credits: 4.0
Semester: 15
Learning Format: Lecture, Lab
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

As part of a complete first-year engineering program this course will cover introductory principles of engineering design concepts through practical projects to be undertaken by teams of students. The projects and exercises will give students experience with the entire design process, from needs-assessment to final testing and documentation. The final project will involve design, construction and programming of a computer controlled machine such as an autonomous robot to perform an assigned task.

Course Content

The fundamental principles of engineering design will be introduced and reinforced through hands-on exercises and project work.  Topics will include needs assessment, design constraints, generating and assessing alternative designs, modelling and optimization, and communicating the design outcome.

Students will work in teams to complete a number of design exercises and projects, which will give students multiple opportunities to experience the design process, from definition of needs, to implementation and final testing. 

There will be two major projects: 

  • In the first project, teams of students will take a design from problem definition and identification of constraints through conceptual and preliminary design, and possibly (depending on complexity) including the construction of a prototype. 
  • In the second project, teams of students design, construct, and program a machine such as an autonomous robot to perform a specific task.  All materials such as a robot kit with a microprocessor, various motors and sensors will be provided.  This project will take the design process from a clearly defined problem through conceptual design, preliminary design, testing, detailed design and documentation.

Students will be expected to provide proper documentation of their designs and of the design process that has been followed.

Methods of Instruction

Lectures and lab with an emphais on small group work.

Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with Douglas College 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:

Assignments                                 15-30%

Quizzes                                        15-30%

Project #1 - Team evaluation          10-15%

Project #1 - Individual evaluation    10-15%

Project #2 - Team evaluation          10-15%

Project #2 - Individual evaluation    10-15%

Learning Outcomes

After completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Follow a standard structured engineering design process to develop a solution to a design problem;
  2. Assess stated needs/requirements to develop a design problem statement that addresses the core need/requirement;
  3. Undertake research to identify relevant background information and prior art;
  4. Apply selected creative thinking methods to develop innovative solutions for engineering design problems;
  5. Apply formal decision making methods to assist in choosing between alternative conceptual designs
  6. Follow standard structured process to design a system comprised of electrical, mechanical, computer and software sub-systems
  7. Apply discipline specific technical knowledge in the design process and demonstrate understanding of the relevance of that knowledge to the disciplines in professional practice;
  8. Demonstrate selected teamwork skills toward the successful accomplishment of an engineering design project;
  9. Identify business, social, environmental and regulatory considerations relevant to the execution of an engineering design project;
  10. Apply selected tools for effective management of time and resources in the context of an engineering design project.

course prerequisites

CMPT 1105 or CMPT 1110 or equivalent.





curriculum 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 schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.