Guidelines for the Preparation and Assessment of the Engineering Multidisciplinary Design Project Proposal

· Topic: Designing a Hybrid Crane

· Multidisciplinary students involved: Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering

· Research topic is discussed with course instructor and approved by him/her.

· Collaboratively team members prepare and submit an EMDP research proposal. The proposal has to follow either of the following formats (SPSE) or a mixture of both:

Situation (S) Problem (P) Solution (S) Evaluation (E)

The situation provides background information that previews the main issue or problem that the report will tackle and discuss. Towards the end of this section, the situation narrows from general to specific, thus stating a clear and specific research area that will be the focus of the project. The reader needs to know the relevance of the research. Thus, there should be a short history or relevant background that leads to a statement of the problem that is being addressed. This part of the proposal usually follows a funnel style, starting broadly and then narrowing to the question the paper is asking to address or find an answer to.

At this point, the current problem and proposed solution(s) are reviewed with reference to previous research to provide a basis for the new discussion/study.

· All terminologies and abbreviations used in the project should be defined.

· Illustrate and summarize findings: organize data and emphasize trends and patterns

with appropriate visuals.

· Interpretation of results: evaluate, analyze, explain the significance and implications of the results and link to previous research

· Support/disprove, conclusions about theoretical and/or practical implications.

· Explain key limitations: questions left unanswered, major experimental constraints,

lack of correlation, negative results.

· Discuss agreement or contrast with previously published work.

· Offer possible alternative solutions.

· Offer general conclusions, noting your reasoning and main supporting evidence(s).

· Recommend areas for future study and explain your choices.


Titles must do the following:

1. Explain what exactly the document is about

· (Hint: consider using a key term to tell what the format is, proposal, report, instructions etc.).

2. Identify the field of study.

3. Stand out from all other documents on the subject.

4. Use a maximum of 2-3 key terms/details.

5. Avoid a string of big-words (noun stacks)

· (Hint: use some small, familiar words)

6. Be audience-centered.

· (What does the reader know already about the topic?)

· Hint: avoid wording your lay audience will not know.

2. RESEARCH QUESTION (like a Thesis in focus but stated as question)

Must be specific

3. REAL LIFE SITUATION (75 -125 words)

Use specific language and real life examples

4. IDENTIFICATION OF KEY PROBLEMS (4 MAX) (125 to 175 words)

Explain specifically how the problem negatively affects these areas of life:

1. self-preservation (safety, health etc.)

2. money

3. reputation

4. self-actualization (the good/ideal life)

5. MAIN SOLUTIONS AND BENEFITS (5 MAX) (175 to 250 words)

6. PROPOSED METHODOLOGY (125 to 175 words)

(How will you find the solutions? And why?)

· Direct observation:

· Surveys

· analyzing a live situation

· interviews

· lab experiment

· building a small-scale model

· analyzing an original piece of literature/document

· statistics

· historical data

· literary data (art, references to poets etc.)

· Research

· Reading professional articles and books/sources

· Examination of lab experiments, stats, surveys, direction observations of others.


Explain how each member’s major can contribute to the project.


Use 4 Articles; but one book/commercial webpage is acceptable

Sample References:

[1] G. Eason, B. Noble, and I. N. Sneddon, “On certain integrals of Lipschitz-Hankel type involving products of Bessel functions,” Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. London, vol. A247, pp. 529–551, April 1955. (references)

[2] J. Clerk Maxwell, A Treatise on Electricity and Magnetism, 3rd ed., vol. 2. Oxford: Clarendon, 1892, pp.68–73.

[3] I. S. Jacobs and C. P. Bean, “Fine particles, thin films and exchange anisotropy,” in Magnetism, vol. III, G. T. Rado and H. Suhl, Eds. New York: Academic, 1963, pp. 271–350.

[4] K. Elissa, “Title of paper if known,” unpublished.

[5] R. Nicole, “Title of paper with only first word capitalized,” J. Name Stand. Abbrev., in press.

[6] Y. Yorozu, M. Hirano, K. Oka, and Y. Tagawa, “Electron spectroscopy studies on magneto-optical media and plastic substrate interface,” IEEE Transl. J. Magn. Japan, vol. 2, pp. 740–741, August 1987 [Digests 9th Annual Conf. Magnetics Japan, p. 301, 1982].

[7] M. Young, The Technical Writer’s Handbook. Mill Valley, CA: University Science, 1989.