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Robotics competition: Providing structure, flexibility, and an extensive learning experience

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2 Author(s)
Grimes, J. ; California Polytech. State Univ., San Luis Obispo, CA ; Seng, J.

This paper presents the design and implementation of the annual robotics competition at Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo. Described are the infrastructure used to run the competition, the educational outcomes, and student responsibilities that make this competition an excellent opportunity for broad-based student educational growth. This annual robot competition provides a forum for students to receive educational credit while working on a multi-faceted project that provides an experience that is close to what they would encounter in their future professional career, and to compete for prizes. With faculty advisor supervision, the students have full responsibility for defining the competition rules, designing and constructing the competition course, developing partnerships with industry, and carrying out the competition. Each year the students define a new set of rules for the competition that results in the development of new robots. The key student learning possibilities that will be presented in the paper include: a) team-based learning; b) interdisciplinary experience that includes mechanical engineering and computer engineering; c) life-long learning skills; d) communication skills; e) leadership skills. Also this paper will address the key responsibilities of the faculty that are necessary for this student learning experience to be successful.

Published in:

Frontiers in Education Conference, 2008. FIE 2008. 38th Annual

Date of Conference:

22-25 Oct. 2008