PRIME Modules, Project Based Resources for Introduction to Materials Engineering, are being developed that utilize modern materials science and engineering technologies and proven education methodologies of active learning and open ended projects. The modules are designed for use in a freshmen/ sophomore level Introduction to Materials Engineering course. This course is required by most engineering programs and is an ideal place to excite students about their engineering majors and expose them to real world engineering experiences. Currently four of the classroom modules have been developed and utilized in Introduction to Materials classes. There is a non-volatile memory module where students are taught the fundamentals of electronic and magnetic properties in the context of learning about options for non-volatile memory in portable electronics. In another module, students learn about solid oxide fuel cells and the ceramic nanomaterials used to fabricate them. While being exposed to this emerging application, students learn the basics about ceramics, defects, and phase diagrams. A third module exposes students to fiber reinforced plastics used for civil infrastructure. This module covers mechanical properties, diffusion, polymers, and composites. The fourth module developed teaches students about crystal structure, mechanical properties of metals, and phase diagrams in the context of biomaterials (self-expanding stents made from shape memory alloys). Each classroom module contains background resources for faculty, lecture notes, active in class exercises, homework problems, and an open ended, team project.
Stacy Gleixner, Elliot Douglas, and Olivia Graeve. "Project-Based Introductory to Materials Engineering Modules on Biomaterials, Solid Oxide Fuel Cells, Non-Volatile Memory, and Fiber Reinforced Plastics" ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition (2006): 11.1040.1-11.1040.13.