Improving the sketching ability of engineering design students
Editor: Anja Maier, Stanko Škec, Harrison Kim, Michael Kokkolaras, Josef Oehmen, Georges Fadel, Filippo Salustri, Mike Van der Loos
Author: Hilton, Ethan Clark; Paige, Myela; Williford, Blake; Li, Wayne; Hammond, Tracy; Linsey, Julie
Institution: 1: Georgia Institute of Technology, United States of America; 2: Texas A&M University, United States of America
Section: Design Education
From improving spatial visualization skills to concept generation, sketching is both a useful practice and a powerful tool for engineering designers. The method of teaching free-hand sketching in engineering courses has changed little in recent decades as CAD programs become more prevalent. This paper discusses a new method of teaching free-hand sketching in engineering design using pedagogy borrowed from Industrial Design curricula focusing on perspective sketching. An experiment comparing pre- and post-course sketches shows how the perspective method and more traditional method of teaching sketching impact students' sketching ability. The experiment finds that students in the perspective-based sketching course are more likely to improve their sketching ability over the course of the semester. Observing improvements in sketching ability could lead to observations in correlations between sketching ability and other necessary skills in engineering design. These observations could greatly impact our understanding of successful designers and how to train students in engineering design courses.