Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis

Themed-Learning Communities (TLCs) in Nanotechnology

A TLC is a set of three nanotechnology-themed courses (see course descriptions below) for fall semester Freshman students. Upon enrollment, the IUPUI Registrar divides participating into TLC cohorts. TLCs offer students the opportunity to take a group of classes together and to form supportive study groups as they acclimate to university life and learn how to get the most from their college experience. TLCs also allow students to get to know faculty and staff so that they are prepared to work closely with an assigned faculty-mentor on a nanotechnology research project starting during their sophomore year.

The three TLC courses in Freshman Engineering are as follows:

Introduction to Engineering
This course provides an overview of the engineering profession and the methodologies of engineering design from a nanotechnology perspective. Students develop skills using computer aided design and simulation software for engineering systems. In addition, students learn to implement laboratory experimentation as a tool in the design process. The course also introduces students to the university’s network and software resources.

Introduction to the Engineering Profession
The course introduces students to the engineering profession — with a focus on nanotechnology careers and research — and to campus resources. The course is designed to help students develop essential communication and thinking skills along with the study and time-management skills needed for success in studying engineering. Collaborative techniques used in engineering practice are also utilized.

Fundamentals of Speech Communications
In this course, students will learn the following: listening skills, how to analyze their audience, how to critically organize speeches, how to be clear and concise, and how to be persuasive through effective delivery and exceptional research. Like the other two TLC courses, this course will be geared toward nanotechnology. Students will specifically learn how to publicly speak about engineering and nanotechnology by preparing presentations on those and related topics.

Acknowledgements
The development of the track is supported by National Science Foundation – Nanotechnology Undergraduate Education (NUE) grant 1042110 and School of Engineering & Technology at IUPUI.