What is Engineering Design
This lesson helps students understand the basic rules and regulations engineers follow when designing buildings.
Computer with internet connection and a way for all students to see the computer.
Students will understand the importance of engineering design, and how it relates to earthquakes.
National Standards Addressed
- Math (Presented by National Council of Teachers of Mathematics in 2000)
- Use visualization, spatial reasoning, and geometric modeling to solve problems
- Problem Solving
- Solve problems that arise in mathematics and in other contexts
- Recognize and apply mathematics in contexts outside of mathematics
- Use representations to model and interpret physical, social, and mathematical phenomena
- Science (Presented by National Research Council in 1996)
- Physical science
- Earth & space science
- Structure of the earth system
- Earth's history
- Science in personal and social perspectives
- Natural hazards
- Risks and benefits
- Technology (Presented by the International Society for Technology in Education in 1998)
- Social, ethical, & human issues
- Students understand the ethical, cultural, and societal issues related to technology.
- Technoloy research tools
- Students use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources.
Engagement Activity (optional)
Ask the students if they’ve ever watched Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, and seen what the show calls “Demolition Day”. Ask students if they have ever seen a building be demolished by something other than large trucks and people with sledgehammers.
As a class visit the NEES Wood Project online. Watch videos of construction of building, and video of final shaking.
- This Web site shows the videos of the various
phases in testing this building before the final shake.
Have students speculate as to what engineering design is.
- Engineers work to make building safer, and accessible for all people.
The rules engineers follow are called codes:
- Accessibility codes
- Making places accessible to people in wheelchairs
- Fire and safety codes
- Making sure in case of a fire the people in the building would be protected and safe
- This includes things like sprinkler systems, exits, staircases
- Hazard codes
- Making sure buildings are safe in case of tornadoes, hurricanes, or earthquakes
Sustaining, Concluding, or Extending Activities (optional)
- Have students watch the final tests, after making predictions as a class whether or not the building will survive the test or not.
- This Web site shows the video of the final shake based on the Northridge Earthquake, from a number of different cameras.
- Have students explore NEES @ Buffalo’s Web site, viewing the other tests
structural engineers complete in relation to earthquake engineering design.
Evaluation and Assessment
Student understanding will be evaluated through student’s discussion and questions about the events and the videos.
E-Resources, Print Materials, and Hands-on Activities