Lesson 1: The Engineering Design Cycle

In this section, we'll introduce the Engineering Design Cycle. Create a course for our robot and discuss.

1. Introduction to the design process

Have you ever thought about where things come from? Certainly, we know that everything starts with raw materials, but who spent the time designing your mechanical pencil or your bookbag? How long did it take them and how many attempts did it take until they had it right. Even the simplest things in life were created using the Engineering Design Process. If you have ever heard a teacher speak about the Writing Process or the Scientific Method then you are familiar with the concept. In the Engineering Design process, you will first define a problem or some challenge that you would like to solve, make a plan for solving it, Create your solution and then Evaluate how well your solution worked. The process is a cycle and is often repeated several times until a prototype or model is developed that solves the problem perfectly. Sometimes the new invention or idea is something completely different than anything anyone has ever seen or heard of and other times it is as simple as a combination of two or more previously created inventions or ideas. If you already have an idea of a problem that you would like to solve or something new that you would like to invent, then you are well on your way to being a successful engineer!

What unique inventions do you use each day that makes your life easier?