The Early Intervention and Mechanical Engineering (EIME) project provides real-world engineering design experience to undergraduate engineering students while significantly enhancing the services provided to children with special needs in the region surrounding Tennessee Technological University (Upper Cumberland region). These enhanced services are provided through a mutually beneficial collaboration between early intervention and engineering at Tennessee Tech. Engineering students engage in this project as part of a Design of Machinery Course. Student teams are matched with children with needs for novel applications of adaptive and assistive technology to facilitate transitioning of children from early intervention to preschool programs and inclusive environments. The projects are selected to emphasize motion control tasks. Examples include improved mobility, exercise, adaptations for feeding and everyday functioning, and interactive play. The project serves the engineering program by providing real-world design experiences as well as resources to develop and test projects. This paper will describe how the project is integrated into the design of machinery curriculum and present several examples of typical projects. Assessment of student outcomes relative to design and learning experience will be discussed. The paper will conclude with lessons learned and recommendations for future implementation of this project.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.