At Colorado School of Mines, all students are required to take EPICS I. According to the program’s website, the EPICS course “introduces a design process that includes open-ended problem solving and teamwork integrated with the use of computer software as a tool to solve engineering problems. The course emphasizes written technical communications and introduces the importance of effective oral presentations.”
Really, “Open ended problem solving and teamwork”? What does the even mean? The class revolves around students making a project with their group — is that what engineering is all about? I don’t need a class to teach me that.
Consider the phrase “integrated with the use of computer software as a tool to solve engineering problems.” Now that is just plain false. All EPICS I does is teach students how to design objects with SolidWorks. There are so many different graphic design programs, what is the point of learning just one? Shouldn’t we be able to choose which tool we use?
Even after learning about graphic design programs, teachers still insist upon hand-drawings. For my project I used Google Sketchup to make designs, but my teacher said that they had to be hand drawn. He explained that we will not always have access to the technology and need to know how to design without technology. Haven’t I already demonstrated that I can design by hand with the sketching exam? Come on! Besides, I probably will have access to the technology.
Finally, “the course emphasizes written technical communications and introduces the importance of effective oral presentations.” Okay, oral presentations truly are important, but “written technical communications”? I can write a memo! I don’t need a specific format that I will probably never, ever follow again.
Don’t get me wrong, my teachers are great. I just hate the course. It really has no point and is irritating, especially when the lecture drones on and on about pointless formats and other things. I can’t even recollect what they talk about for two hours, other than that it is unnecessary and makes me go to sleep.