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Pregúntale a un estudiante de pregrado: Preguntas archivadas


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Q: I write from India; currently I am in my last year of pre-university schooling. I am very interested in engineering, and especially automobile engineering. I am really interested in designing automobiles. What are the top engineering schools in the world where I could pursue these interests?

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Q: What the kind of courses are you taking?
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Q: Is it usually really hard to find a job once you've completed engineering studies in a college?
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Q: I am an undergraduate student studying toward a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc) degree in electrical engineering.

(1) What kind of a pay should I expect from an internship at my second year?
(2) What kind of a pay should I expect to get from a job after I have completed my studies?

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Q: What do you like about environmental engineering?
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Q: I am sixteen years old. I would like to be an engineer in the telecommunication field. Please let me know about its scope and what it is all about.
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Q: What is a good strategy for building a strong weight-withstanding card house?

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Q: I am applying to a university and would like to get a part-time job so that I can work while I am in school? How would I maintain a good GPA while working?
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Q: I am currently doing a school project in which I am being interviewed as if ten years from now I am an electrical engineering being interviewed for a job. I would like to know what the requirements for obtaining a career as an electrical engineering. I would like to know what steps I need to take for that specific field. What kind of majors, certificates, etc., should I pursue?
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Q: I was wondering if it is hard to become an engineer? Even if it is hard, is it worth it? I am really getting interested in this field. I am 14 years old and hope to one day work as an engineer.
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Q: I am an electronics and communications student and I am interested in learning more about communication systems of the future.
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Q: Did you decide which engineering discipline to study during your first year in college? Or later?
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Q: What study habits or skills would I need in order to do well in computer programming?
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Q: Why did you decide to study engineering, and do you find the coursework allows much hands-on work?
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Q: I am a community college student and I am trying to decide if I should transfer to a university that has both Engineering and Engineering Technology programs. However, I can't find the difference between Engineering and Engineering Technology. Could someone please explain the difference?
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Q: How did you choose the school you went to for your degree? I'm having a hard time deciding…help!
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Q: I am a junior in high school and all my life I have enjoyed building things, solving problems and drawing plans for various devices. After doing a little bit of construction with an engineer on a mission trip with church, I am pretty sure I want to go into engineering. My only problem is that when I understand math I love it, but there are times when I don’t understand it and then I can’t stand it. I am in Trig Analysis / Pre-calculus this year and I like solving the problems, but I still have mixed feelings. Do you or any students that you work with have the same problem and do you think it would be a big hindrance to me if I want to succeed in Civil Engineering?
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Q: I am a third year student in a Bachelor of Technology program in India. I want to devote my career to the betterment of my country, India. What is the most useful path for a student like me to take in order to advance this cause?
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Q: My friends tell me that it's better to find a roommate who is also studying engineering if I go into engineering — do you find this is true?

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Q: I am a senior attending a small rural high school in the United States. I am very interested in majoring in Biological Systems Engineering in college. I would like to get some information on:

1. the criteria you used in choosing an engineering college;
2. the high school requirements that you had to fulfill in order to qualify;
3. what is the most interesting impact that you feel that engineering brings to the world around us?


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Q: I do not stay at a dorm at school; I commute everyday. Is it harder to find a club or activity to join if you are a commuter?
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Q: I am a freshman in college and my major is Computer Engineering. I am taking an Introduction to Electrical Engineering class. Is it bad that I do not understand the topics discussed in class? We just started class and it seems like the other students all know what the teacher is talking about, but all the things I am interested in like computers, the hardware and how it operates are never discussed in this class.
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Q: what does it take for somebody to become an Electrical or Electronics Engineer?
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Q: I am in my 2nd year of electronics and telecommunication engineering and wanted to know about specializations. I am interested in electronics, robotics and automation and don't have a clear view about the courses offered related to my major and interests.
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Q: What is the difference between Robotics and Mechatronics? Also, how does Mechanical and Automation Engineering differ from Mechanical Engineering?

A. Mechatronics

The word mechatronics was invented by the Japanese engineer Ko Kikuchi in 1969. It is a combination of the terms 'mechanical' ("mecha" for mechanisms, i.e., machines that 'move') and 'electronics'. The word reflects the basic nature of this field, to integrate electrical and mechanical systems in a single device. Mechatronics is said to be the junction where concepts from mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and computer science are merged to design, build and operate products.

The leading scholarly publication on mechatronics is IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics.

A1. Definitions of Mechatronics

Here are several definitions of mechatronics:

(1) The incorporation of electronics into mechanisms [1]

(2) The integration of mechanical engineering with electronics and intelligent computer control [1]

(3) The use of a synergistic integration of mechanics, electronics, and computer technology to produce enhanced products or systems [2]

(4) The application of complex decision making to the operation of physical systems [1]

(5) The addition of intelligence to a mechanical design or replacing mechanical designs with an intelligent electronic solution [3]

(6) The synergistic combination of mechanical engineering, electronic engineering, and software engineering [4]

[Note: some of these definitions use derivatives of
Synergy, which is observed when "two or more discrete influences or agents acting together create an effect greater than that predicted by knowing only the separate effects of the individual agents. Often the prediction is the sum of the effects each influence is able to create independently."]


A2. Mechatronics and Robotics

A robot is a good example of a mechatronic system. Most robots integrate software, electronics, and mechanical designs in a synergistic manner (meaning that the separate parts act together in such a way that the combined effect is stronger than the sum of the separate effects of each one of the components). Other examples of mechatronics are the digital thermostat and the anti-lock brake system. Both were originally designed as mechanical systems and have been improved later by their integration with electronic controls and digital computing elements.

Robotics is considered a subset of mechatronics, since almost all robots are mechatronic but not all mechatronic systems are robots. Many classes on mechatronics in university curricula include the design and construction of robots or robotic elements as examples (see for example here and here). Some mechatronics programs and mechatronics courses are essentially all about robotics.

A3. Mechatronics in academia

In spite of earlier projections that estimated large growth in the number of engineering departments labeled formally Mechatronics Engineering, the actual number of such programs continues to be small. Most of the academic activity in mechatronics occurs in departments of mechanical, electrical, and computer engineering.


B. Mechanical and Automation Engineering

Programs labeled Mechanical and Automation Engineering are more popular in Chinese speaking regions than elsewhere (see for example the departments at the Shanghai Jiaotong University, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and I-Shou University).

Like Mechatronics Engineering, the combination Mechanical and Automation Engineering is an example of an inter-disciplinary field that integrates mechanical systems with electronics, control, and computer technologies. In Mechanical and Automation Engineering, there is, in addition to mechanical system design and analysis, a focus on process control, networking, and computer interface and software. Some examples of courses in Mechanical and Automation Engineering are mechanics and materials, thermalfluids, dynamics and control, electronics, robotics, design and manufacturing.

Sources:

[1] Robert Bishop: The Mechatronics Handbook.

[2] Newton C. Braga: Robotics, Mechatronics, and Artificial Intelligence: Experimental Circuit Blocks for Designers.

[3] Microchip.com website: Designing for Mechatronics, 2006, accessed January 25, 2007.

[4] Wikipedia.org: Mechatronics, accessed January 25, 2007. Caution: Wikipedia entries can be changed arbitrarily by any user at any time.



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Q: I am studying surveying and geoinformatics for my first degree, but want to major in aeronautical engineering for a Master degree. I dream, think and feel aeronautics all the time.

Which US university should I apply to?

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Q: Can you provide a website where I can download a MATLAB windkessel model?
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Q: BACKGROUND: We live in Sierra Vista, AZ, about 70 miles SE of Tucson. My 17 year old son is a high school senior and wants to become an engineer, but is still undecided which engineering sub-category he wants to specialize in. He is interested in robotics and maybe nanotechnology. He has taken Advanced Placement classes in English, Mathematics and Physics. He already has earned some college credit by signing up for Dual-Credit classes. We are split over 2 options: 1) having him attend for the first 2 years a community college which has a 2-year Pre-Engineering Program, and then have him attend a traditional university for the last 2 years of college; or 2) having him start as a freshman in a traditional 4-year institution.

QUESTIONS:

What, if any, are the pros and cons of both options? Is there an industry bias out there when it comes to hiring an applicant who either completed a 4 year program right away or first did a 2 year program and then finished up a 4 year program?

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Q: I am a first year engineering student. Could you please recommend some books that helped you when you were freshmen?
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Q: I am a student of mechanical engineering, in my final year toward a baccalaureate degree. I recently developed interest in the field of chemical engineering. How should I proceed?
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Q: I am a senior in electrical engineering at the University of Texas in El Paso (UTEP), and am interested in a Co-op job for Summer 2007. Where do I look for such a job?
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Q: I am about to take several exams - what is the best way to study?
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Q: How much homework do you have?
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Q: Hi, I'm a current engineering student (I have an A.A. in Pre-engineering) pursuing an electrical/computer engineering degree and would like to know what school supplies will be needed for a Junior engineering student. Also what type of computer would be recommended.
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Q: How hard are the courses…I hear it's really tough!
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Q: If you had to do it all over again, would you be studying engineering?
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Q: How did you decide which university to attend? Did you apply to several?

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