Overview of Courses

The development of the First-Year Design (FYD) curriculum stemmed from the understanding of what makes a successful and marketable engineer. So, what exactly makes an engineering graduate marketable?

In addition to knowledge and skills, successful engineers…
… are dynamic, agile, resilient, flexible, creative, and innovative.
… must have analytical, communication, business and management skills.
… demonstrate ingenuity, high ethical standards, leadership, and professionalism.

The First-Year Design (FYD) program introduces a signature two-part curriculum that gives students an almost immediate hands-on experience! Students enrolled in the FYD course learn the engineering design process while simultaneously putting it to practice. Within just six weeks, the students apply their newfound knowledge and skills to solve real-world problems from the Duke and Durham communities – materializing their ideas from paper-to-prototype!

The First-Year Design program includes two courses:

EGR101L: “Engineering Design & Technical Communication”

This course provides students with the fundamental knowledge and skills to be a professional and successful engineer with the abilities to solve problems through engineering design, communicate ideas, and collaborate with others.

Students learn how to define the design problem, research the problem and solution space, establish design specifications, brainstorm solutions, select a solution, and then define and describe the selected solution in more detail. In this course, students apply the engineering design process to meet the needs of a client, work on interdisciplinary teams to design an engineering solution, and communicate the critical steps in the design process in written and oral/visual formats.

Learn more about EGR101L


EGR190L: "Design 2 Deliver" (D2D)

This course is for those who are undeniably committed to seeing a challenge through to success.

The engineering process is intensely iterative, and some teams may not “finish” with their prototype after one semester of EGR101L. If there is a mutual interest between the student design team and the client, the students have the option to enroll the following semester to complete the design project and deliver the final, working product to the client.

With more autonomy, students continue to work the engineering design process, improve their project management skills, and ultimately challenge each other to be flexible, self-sufficient, and ultimately committed!

Learn more about EGR190L: “Design 2 Deliver”