Document Type


Version Deposited

Published Version

Publication Date

Fall 2019

Publication Title

Advances in Engineering Education


This paper describes the use of a large-scale, multi-semester design project as a means of integrating six courses in the mechanical engineering curriculum. The project, a bench-scale hybrid powertrain, is built up - component by component - as students advance through the curriculum. The authors used the project to test two research hypotheses: 1) that a long-term, large-scale design project would increase long-term subject matter retention and 2) that a long-term, large-scale design project would increase students' design and problem-solving skills. The authors found that the design project had no measurable effect on long-term subject matter retention, but did have an impact on design thinking and skill. The paper gives a full description of the project and assessment effort, and provides some of the insights acquired by the authors while conducting this research. A complete description of the project and videos of student designs can be found on the project website,


This journal is available via Open Access.

Published Citation

Constans, E., Bhatia, K., Kadlowec, J., Merrill, T., Zhang, H. & Angelone, B. (2019). The Benchtop Hybrid - Using a Long-Term Design Project to Integrate the Mechanical Engineering Curriculum. Advances in Engineering Education, 7(3), 1–29.