McCormick School of Engineering, Northwestern University

Engineering First ® History

During the past decade engineering education has been moving towards increased design content and integration. It is believed that in the past too much emphasis had been placed on scientific analysis at the expense of creative design. Additionally, the basic scientific analysis being taught was too isolated from engineering application to be an effective teaching tool. Finally, previous students had been dissatisfied with the lack of exposure to engineering during their first year.

Engineering First was created to solve these problems at McCormick. The Engineering First committee developed the Engineering Analysis and Design Thinking and Communication (formerly Engineering Design and Communication) courses for McCormick freshmen that integrate engineering science and mathematics, and emphasize design.

Engineering First began in 1996. Pilot versions of the courses were tested, refined, and integrated into the McCormick curriculum between 1997 and 2000.


Founding Faculty

Prof. Alvin Bayliss, ECE and ESAM
Prof. Ted Belytschko, ME
Prof. Stephen Carr, Dean, Undergraduate Engineering
Prof. J. Edward Colgate, ME
Prof. Penny Hirsch, Writing Program
Prof. William L. Kath, ESAM
Prof. David Kelso, BME
Prof. Sridhar Krishnaswami, ME
Prof. William Miller, ChBE
Prof. Brian Moran, CE and ME
Prof. Jorge Nocedal, ECE
Prof. Greg Olson, MatSci
Prof. Michael Peshkin, ME
Prof. Barbara Shwom, Writing Program


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