General Engineering Projects/Syllabus

Course FormatEdit

Classes start off with presentations usually by the instructor. Then there are team meetings, presentations, notebook grading, design inspection, and project work.

Students are expected to schedule 10 hours a week outside of class for projects. Class time should be reserved for scaffolding lectures, student presentations, team meetings. Project work in class comes last.

The first three weeks of class are activities to prepare for the projects. They include "mini projects" and assignments such as watching videos, taking quizzes, and making something over the weekend. Later there are there are 3 four week projects.

Class Meeting TimesEdit

All classes are in ----. Times that the rooms will be open for project work will be posted ...


Grade Minimum Points Total %
A 1800 90%
B 1600 80%
C 1400 70%

Grading is done on a point system. This means that points accumulate in some assignment categories and the percentage slowly increases during the semester.

You should be part of two other Canvas Courses: Engineering Survey and Engineering Lab. These gradebooks need to be combined with this one.

There is no extra credit. There are no "makeup work" points.

3 General Point CategoriesEdit

Attendance 25% .. seminar+activies+class attendance = 500 points
Teamwork 40% .. project+tasking+presentations = 800 points
Individual Activity 35% .. notebook + weekly + scaffolding = 700 points

Point SourcesEdit

Point Source Possible
Seminar participation 200
Engineering Activities 100
Class Attendance 200
Assignments 200
Notebook 250
Weekly Report 250
Presentations 200
Task Negotiation 200
Project Documentation 400
TOTAL Possible 2000

Engineering Seminar AttendanceEdit

The percentage of Engineering Seminars you attend Thursdays 5-5:50 is multiplied by 200. There is nothing you have to do. If you are late, you will not earn any points. If you don't participate, you will not earn any points. If you leave early, you will not earn any points. There are 200 points possible.

Engineering ActivitiesEdit

Students earn these 100 points a variety of ways. They form clubs such as SWE or NSBE and get 10 points for meeting each week. Or they organize a field trip or find a speaker (50 points). They go to hackerspaces every weekend or participate in local HAM group. In general an activity is where working engineers are volunteering/socializing in the local community. A calendar is maintained of events that the instructors feel are worthy of your consideration. You can tour them, or find a spot and become a regular. To get the points you have to present what went on in class.

Class AttendanceEdit

Classroom attendance can be taken at any time. It may be taken more than once per class. This results in a percentage that is multiplied by 200 at the end of the semester to generate points.


Assignments start off with reading the wikibook associated with this course, practicing the quizzes and taking the assignment test. Some assignments such as equipment certification can be done any time during the year. Other assignments are done in class on a certain day. Others are online. There are many different ways to earn the 200 point maximum.

Notebook GradingEdit

The notebook will be graded in class, in front of you, each week. Grades can range from 0 (you did not write in it) to 100 or more points (you wrote a lot). There is no weekly maximum, however there is a semester maximum of 250 points. A normal grade is around 25 points per week.

Be prepared for the instructor to initiate notebook grading at any time. If the instructor does not initiate grading, you are responsible ;for getting the instructor to grade your notebook once a week. If your notebook is not graded during a week, you will loose about 10 points in the rubric. The rest of the points are not lost

Notebook is graded in three categories:

  • Form means following the rules for writing in the notebook (title, signIn, signOut, diagonal line, pencil, writing only on odd pages, etc) which is 5 points.
  • Drawings start at 2 points and/or 1 point per label related to the drawing.
  • Project writing is graded by counting triplets of:
  • GoingToDo - writing before doing
  • Doing -- writing while doing
  • RANT -- -- taking time to pause, Reflect, Analayze, and think about NexT and Steps

(3 points per triplet).

Students go through this learning curve writing in their notebooks:

  • Write after the fact (no points)
  • Write one triplet with very long doing (3 points)
  • Write trivial triplets that don't explore the unknown (no points)

Three numbers (form,drawing,project) will be written at the top of the even page next to the last odd page you have signed out on. This is followed by a total, the date and your instructors initials.

Weekly ReportEdit

Individual Weekly Reports are done on wikiversity in wiki format. They are graded weekly outside of class. Feedback and the point total is typically in your School's Learning Management System (LMS). Students are responsible for editing their instructors link to their weekly report page in the instructors work space.

The weekly grading rubric is form/communication/push.

Form means writing in wiki format in user space which is typically 5 points.

Communication points are typically 10 and reflect the following:

  • Communicating with your instructor through canvas your attendance problems, materials/tool take home forms, returning stuff when appropriate, etc.
  • Writing in a transparent format so the instructor can tell who is doing what. The biggest mistake is to post pictures/video/text that your team mates created in your weekly report. The second biggest mistake is to take previous work by other teams or work of someone else on the internet and putting it in your weekly report instead of linking to it.
  • Creating links to documents you have edited.
  • Prompt replies (within a day max, within couple hours typically) are necessary for anything to get done. Most students that fail this course stop communicating for days at a time.
  • Instructor can tell the difference between setup for doing something, doing something and working, doing something and failing and discussion of next steps.

Push points are for pushing a project forward. They are recognition that something of value has been accomplished. This has nothing to do with working hard. It has nothing to do with your learning curve. It has nothing to do with driving around to all the hardware stores to prove that some material is in stock. It has nothing to do with the amount of time spent. Lots of Push points can be given for something that takes 1 minute and was found on the internet.

Push points are the subjective part of this course interpreted by the instructor that involve evaluating:

  • Writing Quality (grammar, spelling, clarity, etc)
  • Effective Use of Graphics and/or Video
  • Reference to the CDIO Outline
  • Presentation of Technical Material (equations, tables, data, materials, vendors, costs, etc)
  • Thoroughness of Report Content
  • Degree of Pushing Project forward

Push points also are used in computation of an individuals project documentation grade.


Your team ideally makes two public presentations during the semester to get 200 points. These could be to the engineering seminar, during engineering week, projects day, the college executive board, at a rotary club, etc. Your instructor will award different points for different presentations. Your team should be prepared to present at any time. Presenting what has been done in the past should be the first thing your team does.

Presentations are graded on how practiced, how smooth they are. Large gaps of silence, reading slides, mispronouncing words, not understanding everything that team mates have done, only one person speaking, going over time, all reduce presentation points. The audience may have a roll in grading your presentation using clickers.

Things like attempting a demo, failing and playing a video instead do not reduce points. Having pre-planned answers to possible questions, being able to hold the audience's attention the entire time are necessary to get 100 points.

Typically 3 hours of practice are necessary for a 10 minute presentation. Practice presentations in class will be necessary for the instructor to schedule the public presentations.

Smaller presentations are made in class to get other points such as Engineering Activity points, or practice of a seminar presentation in class to the instructor to try and get a presentation slot are not duplicated here.

Task NegotiationEdit

Each week every student has to identify 8 hours of work per week for themselves to do to push a project forward. Initially, the student will be working on previous documentation, including editing context, shrinking/expanding content. Then students may work through tutorials, editing or creating tutorials on the way. Next is repeating success. Repeating previous failure may be appropriate. Then the issue becomes problem/next step identification.

Ideally the team negotiates exactly what the individual tasks are and then presents these to the instructor for approval. Then the tasks are put on the instructors project management page.

Tasks can range from 10 to 25 points with maximum of 250 points. Zero points are given if no tasks are negotiated or negotiated tasks are not attempted. What reduces tasks points are: causing extended conversations with the instructor, doing something different without answering the question why, constantly "having ideas" and "researching" without permission.

These are things that derail tasks conversations with the instructors:

  • putting multiple people on the same task
  • making a task dependent upon reception of some materials
  • making one task dependent upon another task's completion

Points are lost when the instructor negotiates with individuals rather than the full team.

Tasks are negotiated once a week in class.

Tasks can be assigned to your instructor, your grandmother, students in other engineering classes. Other intro class students can be assigned to tasks with permission of the instructors. There has to be a reasonable chance these other people will perform the task.

Project DocumentationEdit

Project documentation must be edited in Instructor User space. A minimum project document has already been created by an instructor and perhaps edited by a previous team.

Project documentation results in a team percentage. This percentage is multiplied by each individual's total push points to result in an individual score. Push points are found by looking through individuals weekly report.

This is what the instructor looks for when computing the team percentage:

  • Table of contents hasn't changed
  • All information is in one large article without any formatting problems
  • Absence of links to user space or added project document subpages or stubs
  • All presentations given at seminar and projects day are linked, public and dated
  • All video is described (with word video), linked and public
  • Relevant next steps have evolved to reflect accomplishments
  • Problem statement has evolved to reflect next steps
  • All push point work has made it into the project documentation
  • Absence of time, place, names, pictures of people
  • Paragraphs have been shrunk to a sound bye within a collapse template.
  • Absence of I and We statements
  • Integration within the previous document structure/narrative
  • Integration with other team mates work
  • Making use of gallery tags to show lots of pictures
  • Selected pictures, not all pictures are in the final project documentation
  • All pictures have labels
  • Screen shots have company logos removed
  • All content originates from the project rather than originating from an outline/form

First three weeksEdit

During the first three weeks, instructors encourage students to get to know each other and do assignments. For more information see the your instructors page.

Remaining WeeksEdit

You will be working on hopefully one project, but may have to change teams. Opportunities to change teams will be given every 4 weeks.

Class ActivitiesEdit

Attendance is expected and required to succeed in this course. Missed classwork, quizzes, assignments, presentations, etc. can not be made up. Many Scaffolding exercises begin and end in class and can not be made up .. for any reason.

Classes start off with presentations by the instructor and eventually by students. Show respect for these presentations by giving them your full attention, and engaging yourself in your classes projects with questions, comments, help, advice, etc. Don't talk, don't fiddle with computers, don't physically work on projects during presentations.

After the presentations are over, there is time to negotiate tasks, materials with your instructor and team mates. Do not leave class without negotiating your tasks (homework) for the week. Figure out how to use the canvas discussions, facebook, text messaging to communicate outside of class.


Do not purchase materials for your project and expect to be reimbursed by the college. You must make due with the resources in the engineering rooms and what you can find on your own. Anyone spending more than $20 of personal money is violating a number of important goals including reuse, proper planning, team negotiation, and non-duplication of corporate resources. Engineers pride themselves by making due with the materials on hand, not waiting for delivery, not waiting for the right tool, not trying to initially find the "perfect" material.

Do not expect to touch course materials before creating a design document.


The college has limited storage facilities and a small work room. The tables and space in the main classroom must be kept clean. The work bench and side benches in the work room are already spoken for. Negotiate with your instructor where your project materials are to be stored.

Taking stuff homeEdit

Taking stuff home is a privilege, not a right.

Nothing can be taken home unless a form is filled out, signed and given to your instructor. Failure to return the item will result in a "hold" on your student account. You will not be able to see your grades, register for classes, get transcripts sent to another college. You will be fined the replacement value and your account turned over to a collection agency if you don't return the materials.

Stuff brought to SchoolEdit

Do not bring tools, parts, or materials to school and leave them laying around. They may become part of other peoples projects, sorted and stored in a unknown place. They may be moved to storage areas you don't have access to. Anything you leave in a room can become school property very quickly.

Working outside of Class timeEdit

Expect to work 8 hours outside of class time on the projects. Most of the time the tasks you assign yourself will be at home, but some could require use of the college's engineering build room and/or the engineering computers. Engineering instructors know that you need to work on your project outside of class time. Most will let you work while they working with their students as long as you are quiet and respectful.

Typical Academic Honesty PolicyEdit

All graphics, video and text published on your individual wikiversity wiki pages must be your own work. You can re-use anything found wikipedia, wikibooks, wikicommons as long as the links are interwiki. All external links need to be properly implemented.

Common Types of Academic Dishonesty

  • Downloading random graphic from the internet and uploading it to the public domain
  • Using or attempting to present someone else’s work as your own.
  • Inventing or falsifying information
  • Helping someone else to commit an act of academic dishonesty
  • Using the words or ideas of another without attribution or link
  • Submitting work done in previous classes or some place else in the world as if it were new and original personal work without permission of your instructor.

Penalties for an Academic Honesty ViolationEdit

Should point to your college's policies.