Materials Education Symposia - Home

2016 Program
7th North American Materials Education Symposium (Archived Information)

Talks and poster sessions allowed educators to share ideas and resources for materials-related teaching. There was no restriction based on particular approaches or the use of any particular resources.

Symposium Day One: Thursday, March 17

time session
8.00 am Registration, coffee, and Poster setup
8.45 am Prof. Mark Asta, University of California, Berkeley, USA
Prof. Mike Ashby, University of Cambridge, UK
Welcome Address
  SESSION 1: SUSTAINABILITY IN DESIGN AND THE DESIGN PROCESS
9.00 am Session Chair
Dr. Matthew Sherburne, University of California, Berkeley, USA
Dr. Alison Polasik , The Ohio State University, USA
Session Introduction
9.05 am Prof. David Dornfeld, University of California, Berkeley, USA
Sustainability in Design and the Design Process
9.30 am Prof. Mike Ashby, University of Cambridge, UK
Is that really a Sustainable Development? A "green-washing" detector kit
9.55 am Marc Fry, Education Division, Granta Design, Cambridge, UK
Poster Teaser Session
25 x Poster Presenters invited to give a one-minute presentation
10.20 am Poster Session
Coffee
11.00 am Dr. Kara Johnson, formerly IDEO, USA
Inspired by design and designers, teaching materials to young kids
11.25 am Mette Bak-Andersen, Copenhagen School of Design and Technology, Denmark
Knowing about materials; a prerequisite for sustainable design
11.50 am Hannah Melia, Education Division, Granta Design, UK
Engaging Students in Materials through Products
12.15 pm Session discussion led by the session chair
12.45 pm Lunch
  SESSION 2: ENGAGING STUDENT INTEREST, RESEARCH AND INDUSTRY
1.45 pm Session Chairs
Prof. Mark Asta, University of California, Berkeley, USA
Prof. Peter Hosemann, University of California, Berkeley, USA
Session Introduction
1.50 pm Prof. Steven Yalisove, University of Michigan, USA
Deep, engaged learning: a better way to approach team-based/ project based instruction
2.15 pm Dr. Jennifer Dionne, Stanford University, USA
Global challenges, nanoscale solutions – teaching why materials matter
2.40 pm Dr. Sunniva Collins, Case Western Reserve University and 2015 President of ASM International, USA
Promoting Diversity through Project Teams in Engineering Design
3.05 pm Poster Session continued
Coffee/Afternoon Tea
3.50 pm Dr. Patrice E. A. Turchi, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Physical and Life Sciences Directorate, USA
A Case (or Not) to be made about MGI and ICME in Materials Education? The Future of Computational Materials Science
4.15 pm Dr. Sylvia Johnson, NASA Ames Research Center, USA
Space Exploration: Oh, the Materials You’ll Need!
4.40 pm Session discussion led by the session chair
5.10pm Marc Fry, Education Division, Granta Design, UK
Introduction to 8th NAMES to be held at MIT on August 24-25, 2017
5.20pm Prof. Mike Ashby and Dr. Matt Sherburne
Presentation of Symposium Award for Contributions to Materials Education
5.30pm Close

Symposium Day Two: Friday, March 18

time session
8.30 am Registration and coffee
  SESSION 3: BROADENING HORIZONS: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES
9.00 am Session Chairs
Prof. Steven Yalisove, University of Michigan, USA
Hannah Melia, Education Division, Granta Design, UK
Session Introduction
9.05 am Prof. James Shackelford, University of California, Davis, USA
Materials Education Online: Further travels in cyberspace
9.30 am Dr. Ron Kander, Philadelphia University, USA
Improvisational Teaching & Open-Source Syllabus Development
9.55 am Prof. Christoph Gehlen, Technische Universität München, Germany
E-Learning in Civil Engineering
10.20 am Dr. Göran Fernlund, University of British Columbia, Canada
Materials engineering and design at UBC – Broadening the scope and engaging students
10.45am Poster Session continued
Coffee
11.15 am Prof. Christopher Hutchinson, Monash University, Australia
Designing from day one - engaging our students with a multi-disciplinary approach to engineering
11.40 am Assoc. Prof Luke Lee, University of the Pacific, USA
Screencast Tutorials, YouTube, and a Flipped Classroom in Mechanics of Materials
12.05 pm Dr. John Nychka, University of Alberta, Canada
Dr. Glenn Hibbard, University of Toronto, Canada
Rethinking the Materials Paradigm: a Bottom-up Philosophy
12.35 pm Session discussion led by the session chair
1.00 pm Lunch and visit to the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation
  SESSION 4: MATERIALS AND DESIGN
2.30 pm Session Chairs
Dr. Matthew Sherburne, University of California, Berkeley, USA
Dr. Ron Kander, Philadelphia University, USA
Session Introduction
2.35 pm Dr. Tanya Faltens, Purdue University, USA
Teaching Mechanical Properties of Materials using Simplified Molecular Dynamics Simulation Tools
3.00 pm Dr. Lan Li, Boise State University, USA
Integrating Computational Modeling Modules in Different STEM Courses
3.25 pm Session discussion led by the session chairs
3.55 pm Concluding remarks
4.00 pm Close

Optional

4.15 pm CES EduPack Idea Exchange Meeting
5.30 pm Close

Presentation Abstracts

Sustainability in Design and the Design Process

Prof. David Dornfeld, University of California, Berkeley, USA 

Design and manufacturing are important elements of industrial activity and form the basis of product creation and production to meet consumer’s needs for sophisticated products. As part of this consumer pull, sustainability, and more generally the circular economy, are becoming increasingly important elements of the business models of companies and organizations. The need to reduce the impact of consumption and insure material and other resource productivity while maintaining value of the product or service to the consumer are key drivers. To achieve this requires the consideration of sustainability early in the design of products including material selection, manufacturing processing, product use and distribution and end of life. Introduction of these additional constraints require a clear understanding of the objectives, specifications and measures of success. The role of material conversion or processing yield as well embedded energy and other resources, for example water, are key as part of a comprehensive design process. This presentation will review the drivers for sustainable design and production, metrics and tools available for assessing tradeoffs and opportunities, examples of application and links to a broader circular economy concept in which design and manufacturing play a critical role. Future directions for sustainable design and manufacturing will be suggested.


Is that really a Sustainable Development? A "green-washing" detector kit

Prof. Mike Ashby, University of Cambridge, UK

A “sustainable development” is one that contributes in an equitable way to human welfare and does so in a way that minimizes the drain on natural resources. Many academic, civil, commercial and legislative projects claim to do this, and many of them are materials-related – promoting biopolymers, carbon taxes, design for recycling are examples.  We refer to them as “articulations” of sustainable development.  But how are they to be assessed?  There is no simple, “right” answer to questions of sustainable development – instead, there is a thoughtful, well-researched response that recognizes the concerns of stakeholders, the conflicting priorities and the economic, legal and social constraints of a technology as well as its environmental legacy.
Introducing this complexly into teaching is challenging.  This talk will describe a framework for exploring sustainability from a Materials perspective. The aim is not to define a single metric or index of sustainability; rather it is to improve the quality of discussion and debate on projects that claim to be sustainable developments.   This suggests a methodology for the sustainability-analysis of products or projects, supported by a new CES EduPack database, Sustainability, that provides some of the necessary inputs. 


Inspired by design and designers, teaching materials to young kids.

Dr. Kara Johnson, formerly IDEO, USA 

After 15 years at IDEO and at Stanford/CCA, inspiring designers and students and clients to make delightful and meaningful experiences that are anchored in product and materiality, I have recently launched a series of children's books intended to be a platform to teach young kids (age 0-5) about materials. I will share what I learned from my experiences at IDEO, Stanford and CCA…but the focus of this presentation is my philosophy for teaching materials to kids - looking back and looking forward: the process, my journey, hopes/fears for 'The Stuff Kids', and the first book in the series, Woollard – he is made of wool felt. You will also meet some of Woollard's friends: Bob – he is made of cork. Rusty – she is made of steel. Page – she is made of paper. Walter – he is made of concrete, Sandy – she is made of glass, etc. We will discuss some of the opportunities and challenges for teaching materiality in a digital world.


Knowing about materials; a prerequisite for sustainable design

Mette Bak-Andersen, Copenhagen School of Design and Technology, Denmark 

Over the last few decades most design educations have embraced digitalization and largely steered away from previous craftsmanship-based approach to design and materials. This has opened up a new world of possibilities, but has also left designers with a lack of knowledge about materials. Naturally an industrial designer will never have the same deep understanding of materials as a materials engineer. However, the very limited material knowledge of most young designers effectively creates a barrier between the designer and the final product. A barrier that not only acts against the implementation of advanced materials, but also becomes a major obstacle in the creation of sustainable industrially produced products. This presentation introduces the research project Material Driven Design (in progress) and the related cross-disciplinary lab, Material Design Lab (completed). Both focus on teaching materials in design education in a contemporary context embracing the quantity and complexity of new materials and environmental challenges. Contemplating that new knowledge about materials often emerges from fields not traditionally related to design it was necessary to rethink both didactic methods and physical installations. Truly understanding materials and being capable of working with them creatively requires more than memorizing data and theory. Also, when the material is no longer a piece of wood, but has originated from the use of synthetic biology. Physically it required building a space adapted to conduct hands-on material experiments in the triangle between art, natural science and technology. Didactically it required methods that would make complex scientific knowledge understandable and usable in practice for design students. The Material Driven Design project questions not just the way we teach materials, but the role of the material in the design process; experimenting with prioritizing matter over form with the expectation that this can lead to faster integration of new materials and more sustainable products.


Engaging Students in Materials through Products

Hannah Melia, Education Division, Granta Design, UK

Knowledge of Materials and manufacturing processes are essential for any designer; whether the aim is a cool, must-have consumer product or a high-tech aerospace component.  It can sometimes however, be hard to get students to engage with the topic. This talk will focus on the stories that can be told about products that can then motivate students to dig deeper into the science and engineering of materials and processes.

Granta Design will launch in December 2015 a new database that puts products that use materials in innovative ways, front and centre.  Inspiring and visually engaging the databases uses descriptions and images of products written by the 200+ designers who have contributed to the database. The database allows students to explore the materials of which the products are made of and the processes used to make them. Students can explore why materials were chosen, how materials choice for the same product has evolved over the decades and how a changed choice of materials can change the way the product is perceived.  Aesthetic attributes as well as the usual materials properties can be used by students to select suitable substitute materials in redesign projects.


Deep, engaged learning: a better way to approach team-based/ project based instruction

Prof. Steven Yalisove, University of Michigan, USA

It is widely recognized that lecture is not the best way to first introduce material to students. One way to address this is to have students read the text book as the first introduction to the material. This is easy to say but difficult to verify. One approach is to require that the students annotate the reading. Software developed at MIT (nb.mit.edu) permits students to read and annotate online while seeing and interacting with each other. This past year we have been using a more evolved tool called Perusall.com. Like nb.mit.edu, the students interact with each other's annotations. But, now the annotations are automatically graded. The system also provides "confusion reports" to help the instructor tailor the in-class activities to the needs of the particular cohort. This simple method allows the students to be far more focused when they come to class. They don't always understand the all of the material, but they have made an effort to do so. The students actually want to learn more about the material because they have invested time and effort. Paring this with in-class active learning activities based on the original learning objectives of your lectures builds on the well documented engaged learning process ensuring that the learning is deep and will be retained. It also eliminates the issue of syllabus pressure because the students are more than capable of learning the easier parts of the material such as definitions, easy derivations, easy examples, etc. This allows the instructor to spend the class time on the more difficult concepts and not waste time covering easy material. By folding in and formative assessment and feedback techniques, a team based learning environment will lead to deep, engaged learning.


Global challenges, nanoscale solutions – teaching why materials matter

Dr. Jennifer Dionne, Stanford University, USA

Imagine a world where cancer is cured with light, solar cells provide abundant and inexpensive clean energy, objects can be made invisible, and teleportation is allowed through space and time. The future once envisioned by science fiction writers is now becoming a reality, thanks to advances in materials science and engineering. And yet, since materials science is rarely introduced in secondary schools, the field is in many ways underappreciated. Here I’ll describe my approach to instructing broad audiences – from middle-school students to college freshman to the general public – about the principles and power of materials, particularly nanomaterials. By combining hands-on learning with visual and performing art components, classrooms gain a deeper appreciation of how new nanomaterials can address long-standing global challenges.


Promoting Diversity through Project Teams in Engineering Design

Dr. Sunniva Collins, Case Western Reserve University and 2015 President of ASM International, USA

The use of the semester-long team-based design project is a standard approach to teaching design in the engineering curriculum. With modifications to team formation and instruction early in the course on team behavior and dynamics, more successful outcomes can be achieved in the project experience. Using social science research and applied methods from industrial experience, the team design project can also be an exercise in promoting diversity in engineering. At Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH), the undergraduate engineering population is approximately 30% female and minority, an increase over previous years. Retention of these students through degree completion can be assisted by positive engineering experiences early in the major. Two courses in the undergraduate mechanical engineering curriculum, Design for Manufacturing I and II, provide opportunities for team leadership and inclusion, which in turn improve class outcomes. This presentation will discuss data and observations from the last several offerings of the courses, and simple techniques for promoting diversity in the classroom and beyond.


A Case (or Not) to be made about MGI and ICME in Materials Education? The Future of Computational Materials Science

Dr. Patrice E. A. Turchi, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Physical and Life Sciences Directorate, USA

In this presentation, I will briefly comment on a recently published TMS report on “Modeling across Scales” with a summary of the output and recommendations, and their implications for materials education. The key message is about model integration, data management, and uncertainties, which are important aspects of the MGI (Materials Genome Initiative) and ICME (Integrated Computational Materials Engineering) “materials innovation infrastructure”. This talk will conclude with some thoughts on how to best prepare students and young professionals on what could be coming next in computational materials physics. Work performed under the auspices of the U.S Department of Energy by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under contract DE-AC52-07NA27344.


Space Exploration: Oh, the Materials You’ll Need!

Dr. Sylvia Johnson, NASA Ames Research Center, USA

Space exploration has many challenges and materials are critical for many of the systems required to enable robotic or human space exploration.  This talk will highlight challenges for materials with an emphasis on thermal protection materials and systems.  Solving the materials issues will require thinking about materials in the systems and environments where are they to be used. In many cases the materials must be designed for the application, and the system needs to be designed with the materials in mind.  The talk will conclude with some thoughts on the skills needed for materials scientists and engineers working on materials for space.


Materials Education Online: Further travels in cyberspace

Prof. James Shackelford, University of California, Davis, USA

Since the 6th NAMES at the Ohio State University in 2015, additional experience has been gained with teaching materials science and engineering online, providing additional perspectives on the opportunities and the challenges in doing so. The past decade has seen initial enthusiasm and then considerable skepticism about the promise of online education. Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have been the focus of much of that discussion. Informed by this debate, the author in collaboration with UC Davis Extension has continued to explore a number of approaches to online instruction for the field of materials science and engineering:

  1. A complete set of online lectures in conjunction with the introductory materials textbook Introduction to Materials Science for Engineers. The use of these lectures in various formats will be discussed, focusing on their use in the “flipped classroom.”
  2. A hybrid course consisting of the lectures in item 1 along with traditional laboratory experiments on campus during UC Davis Summer Sessions. With three years of experience, a comparison of that offering with a parallel offering of the introductory course with in-class lectures will be given.
  3. A MOOC based on key topics covered in the full online course in item 1 entitled “Ten Things Every Engineer Should Know About Materials Science.” An update will be given on the move to a larger MOOC platform.
  4. A webinar in collaboration with Granta Design focusing on our experience with item 3 and the enhancement of introducing these topics using CES EduPack.

This overview will be followed by broader comments on the overall future of online education.


Improvisational Teaching & Open-Source Syllabus Development

Dr. Ron Kander, Philadelphia University, USA

“Surface Imaging” is an exciting new trans-disciplinary design discipline that focuses on creating imagery in various physical forms using a variety of digital printing technologies, including direct surface imaging on porous and non-porous substrates and fabrication printing through material deposition and subtraction printing technologies.

This presentation describes the development of a new materials science course to serve design students in a new “Surface Imaging” masters program.  The course delivers the basics of materials science, with an emphasis on the mechanical and physical properties of porous and non-porous substrates and polymer-based ink and dye solution chemistry.  The audience for this course is graduate design students with little or no materials science background.

In the process of developing a new course for a new discipline, it became apparent that a new pedagogical approach was required.  Instead of assuming that I knew what these students needed to learn about materials, about two-thirds of the syllabus was left “empty” at the beginning of the semester.  The students were asked to research the impact of materials in the new discipline and develop a list of materials-related things they needed to learn.  This “open source” approach meant that I did not know what I would be teaching in any given week.  With a few days notice, I agreed to “improvise” the classroom experience (lectures, demonstrations, projects, etc.) based on the topics that the students identified as important to their education.  To some extent, I felt like an improvisational comic on stage at a nightclub --- a simultaneously frightening and exhilarating teaching experience.

This presentation will review the advantages and disadvantages of using open-source syllabus development and just-in-time improvisational teaching techniques, and discuss the impact these techniques had on student learning outcomes and the knowledge, skills and abilities that were developed in these graduate design students.


E-Learning in Civil Engineering

Prof. Christoph Gehlen, Technische Universität München, Germany

The objective of university teaching in the field of “construction materials” is to educate the students in such a way that they can take an integrated approach to drafting and constructing in a material-specific manner, evaluating projects both economically and ecologically, defining requirements on the materials in accordance with their use, predicting and mastering the influences of corrosion and ageing. Meeting this requirement is a huge challenge for the lecturers.

In order to achieve this objective, the structure of a “materials” module worth 10 credits in the introductory phase of the course using the classical teaching formats lecture, lecture hall and laboratory exercises has been completely redesigned. The three classical teaching formats have been closely interlinked with e-learning contents (short films, self-tests and forums) which are sorted according to topics and permanently available. The e-learning contents have made independent study with individual time management and learning progress possible, as well as allowing preparation and expansion of the contents conveyed using the classical teaching formats to be supported, steered and tested. Numerous material testing experiments have been filmed, thus consolidating classical laboratory and practical work. This allows learning with the material to be carried out in-depth through additional case studies in significantly smaller groups and much more stimulating laboratory exercises. These activity-oriented working skills are monitored using a newly developed “circuit training test” suitable for the learning objectives.

The new concept was put into practice for the second time in summer 2015. Evaluation by students and employees showed that both learners and lecturers are enjoying working with the new concept and are highly motivated. The students’ examination results are currently being evaluated and compared with the results of earlier examinations.


Materials engineering and design at UBC – Broadening the scope and engaging students

Dr. Göran Fernlund, University of British Columbia, Canada

Materials engineering is getting increasingly divided into sub-specialties. We now offer dedicated courses in biomaterials, nanomaterials, electronic materials, etc. with little emphasis on the connection between them. The results of this is seen in our graduating engineers who often find it difficult to judiciously apply their knowledge and skills to complex, multi-disciplinary real-world problems. After having taught a fairly traditional upper year course in fracture mechanics for a number or years and getting increasingly concerned about student engagement and the practical relevance of the course, the course was redesigned to make it broader, more engaging and more relevant to overall student development. The original course was a traditional lecture style course where the theories of fracture mechanics were presented during the lectures, accompanied by problem sets allowing the students to apply the concepts to fairly artificial text-book problems. The redesigned course is case and team-based, where real-world engineering failures are studied, analyzed and evaluated. The course uses a “flipped classroom” approach where students are doing the background reading on their own time. Class time is used for team and individual quizzes, group and class discussions about applicable theories, analysis approaches, uncertainty, design choices, materials selection, manufacturing, impact on engineering on society, accountability and ethics. By changing the course from being theory to applications driven, the student engagement is significantly increased and instead of just addressing some specialized theories and analysis methods, the new course exposes the students to a wide variety of important issues related to the engineering profession. In the old course, students checked if their answers were right in the back to the text book. In the new course no answers are given and the students are held accountable for the assumptions, methods, accuracy and uncertainty of their work and subsequent consequences to the society at large.


Designing from day one - engaging our students with a multi-disciplinary approach to engineering

Prof. Christopher Hutchinson, Monash University, Australia

Prior to 2015, the 1st year Engineering curricula at Monash was structured in a traditional manner – a 'common first year' of foundation units with discipline specific classes delivered by each Department: Civil, Chemical, Mechanical, Electrical and Materials. In 2015, the discipline specific units were replaced by three new interdisciplinary ‘design and build’ units.

ENG1001 Engineering Design: ‘Lighter, Stronger, Faster’ (Civil, Mechanical and Materials)

ENG1002 Engineering Design: ‘Cleaner, Safer, Smarter’ (Chemical, Electrical and Materials)

ENG1003 Engineering Mobile Applications (Faculties of Engineering and IT)

This change was motivated by several factors but a key aspect was that practising engineers solve problems by working in teams of people with complementary skillsets. The new units require students to work in allocated teams of 3-4 students (assembled considering personality types), supported by incorporating ‘teamwork skills development’ into the units.

In this talk we introduce the ‘Cleaner, Safer, Smarter’ unit, including the challenges faced in delivering a 'design and build' unit to a class of ~900 students. Artificial lighting technologies is used as the unit narrative and we track the improvements in lighting efficiency over time linking into questions of sustainability. We consider combustion forms of lighting (chemical engineering), through to the introduction of electricity and electrical engineering concepts (circuit analysis and design of smart, efficient solutions), followed by the use of the incandescent light bulb, compact fluorescent light bulb and light emitting diode to introduce thermal, optical and electrical properties of materials.

Lectures are replaced with Expert-led sessions where student participation is emphasised. In addition to the technical content, the development of teamwork skills (team roles, project planning, conflict resolution, etc.) creative design and even critique and assessment of work is fostered.

Feedback from students has been very positive, even though the units require substantial preparation prior to each weeks expert-led sessions and labs.


Screencast Tutorials, YouTube, and a Flipped Classroom in Mechanics of Materials

Assoc. Prof Luke Lee, University of the Pacific, USA

With increasing focus on student-centered learning and the implementation of technology in instructional delivery, the flipped (or inverted) teaching approach has garnered attention as a means to utilize online instruction as pre-training outside of the classroom in order to enhance the active learning environment during face-to-face meetings.  This flipped classroom approach appeals to millennial students who have been exposed to information technology from a very young age.  The goal of this presentation is to describe our framework and lessons learned in the design and implementation of a flipped classroom in mechanics of materials.  First we describe the approach to creating, to producing, and to distributing screencast tutorials via a YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/structurefree, 34,000+ subscribers, 4.5 million+ views).  Insights into viewer retention and demographics from a global audience are also shared.  The framework of our flipped classroom approach, where concepts are introduced via online videos as homework and the face-to-face active learning classroom structure, is also described.  Pre and post quiz data are utilized to compare the effectiveness of student learning in the flipped classroom versus a traditional lecture approach to mechanics of materials. For comparison, pre and post quiz performance from other disciplinary courses are used as a baseline.


Rethinking the Materials Paradigm: a Bottom-up Philosophy

Dr. John Nychka, University of Alberta, Canada, and Dr. Glenn Hibbard, University of Toronto, Canada

A common challenge for MSE undergraduates is to weave the concepts being learned in their various courses into a unified framework. The conventional materials paradigm provides a manner for considering the interrelationships of structure, properties, processing, and performance. But is this the clearest way to unify the various aspects of a material?  Does the paradigm suggest ways to permit integrative thinking and synthesis of concepts and ideas? We will consider the conventional MSE paradigm from several perspectives.  We argue that the classical tetrahedron shape representing the paradigm is unnecessarily close-formed.  In particular it diminishes the central role of structure in defining mechanism, which was the critical contribution of the first generations of Materials Scientists.  In effect, these intellectual pioneers created a new way of thinking - one that was quantitative, nested, and considered in parallel.  One can argue that what they had in fact created was an integrated bottom-up philosophy based upon structure. Nonetheless, we will pursue other ways to represent the elements of the paradigm to better focus on structure and foster integrative thinking.


Teaching Mechanical Properties of Materials using Simplified Molecular Dynamics Simulation Tools

Dr. Tanya Faltens, Purdue University, USA

This presentation will demonstrate how a new set of molecular dynamics simulation tools that are freely available on nanoHUB can be used to teach concepts important for understanding the mechanical behavior of materials. The set of 5 simulation tools has been been designed for ease of use in the classroom and covers dislocation dynamics, tensile testing, crack propagation, the martensitic transformation, and melting.  These simulations generate data and graphical visualizations that show the positions of atoms as they evolve over time throughout these processes. The atomic-level structural representations of the material can be tied back to numeric data and graphs of the corresponding materials properties such as specific volume as a function of temperature or stress vs. strain.  The interactive nature of these simulations enables students to not only visualize structures, but to manipulate and experiment with different in silico experimental conditions.  Researchers on nanoHUB’s education team have been studying how to best integrate research-grade simulation tools into engineering lessons in order to maximize their impact on student learning.  Lessons learned from using research grade simulations with undergraduate materials science students at Purdue University will be presented.

This set of simulation tools is part of a larger body of educational material available on nanoHUB.  nanoHUB.org is an open-access science gateway that is funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation and provides computational resources to enable research-grade simulations.  nanoHUB supports both research and education.  With over 300,000 users annually, it has proven to be a versatile publication platform for delivering free educational materials such as course lectures, seminars, tutorials and assignments in addition to computational tools and the environment in which to run the simulations.


Integrating Computational Modeling Modules in Different STEM Courses

Dr. Lan Li, Boise State University, USA

To meet national workforce need, Engineering College at Boise State University integrates computational modeling training into different STEM courses (thermodynamics, structure of materials, kinetics, and mechanical behavior). We flip the courses, requiring students to self-study topics outside the class. In the class, I demonstrate real-world engineering problems and guide the students to solve the problems using different computational modeling techniques. The students have various STEM backgrounds. To seamlessly couple computational modeling modules with the STEM courses and engage student interest, real-world problems, examples and assignments are developed based on the knowledge surveys, which assess student learning and survey student interest and expectation for the courses. I will present the course outline, teaching strategies, and ready-to-use computational modeling problems and examples. I will also demonstrate the course outcomes and discuss the teaching challenges.