Dr. Linda Schmidt Spends Sabbatical at the Petroleum Institute
Dr. Linda Schmidt, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland, has been spending her sabbatical at the Petroleum Institute since September 2011.
Dr. Schmidt originally visited PI in March of 2011 to conduct a series of workshops, including “Enhancing and Assessing Design Project Teamwork,” “Teaching Sketching,” and “Scoping Quality Design Projects.” She also consulted with program administrators and faculty regarding ABET design experience requirements. She was a guest lecturer in several sophomore level design (STEPS) classrooms, where she demonstrated current approaches to brainstorming and sketching and facilitated activities with students.
Because this visit was so successful, Dr. Schmidt was invited to spend a year at PI to help develop curriculum with PI faculty and to lecture in the STEPS course and senior design courses.
Dr. Schmidt spent the fall semester partnering with a STEPS class and senior design class faculty, researching design journaling, and conducting sketching experiments with students in design classes. She also conducted exploratory meetings with PI alumni working at ADNOC companies on activities to bridge student classroom skills with professional workplace tasks.
In the spring semester, Dr. Schmidt is continuing the educational projects she started in the fall, including administering a Senior Design Course survey and co-organizing a “Design Day” at the end of the semester. She is also hoping to conduct an anonymous, online survey of all faculty of senior design teams to determine ways to further fine-tune the design curriculum.
In addition, she is working on several research projects. With Dr. Caroline Brandt, she is researching student attitudes toward thinking and learning. She is also working on a study on peer evaluation with Dr. Jaby Mohammad. This study explores the cultural reasons behind student behavior and the ways students are influenced by their relationships. She also plans to explore new research possibilities with ADNOC operating companies on design and engineering decision-making.
Published March 5, 2012