NEW DESIGNS ON TEACHING BIOLOGICAL ENGINEERING

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The field of biological engineering has evolved tremendously in recent years due to advances in both fundamental understanding of biological systems and in application of engineering methods to utilize this information. To be competitive in the field, graduates of biological engineering programs must have a diverse background which not only is grounded in engineering fundamentals, but also mindful of biological advances. Such requirements of new professionals bring continuing demands on how biological engineering should be taught. At The University of Arizona, the Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE) Department has revised its course offerings in the biological engineering area. This presentation will discuss how two courses have been revised to integrate: use of the internet, discussions of recent technological advances, design projects, and laboratory exercises. After several years of poorlyreceived use of the internet, an improved approach was developed resulting in nearly all students making use of the information on a more than weekly basis. Students responded positively to these changes and performed well compared to students in previous offerings. Biosystems engineering courses The approach we have used at The University of Arizona to teaching biological (or biosystems) engineering courses has been to incorporate engineering fundamentals with biological concepts into practical applications and demonstrations. This manuscript will focus on two courses titled Agricultural Bioengineering (a course on fermentations and industrial scale microbiology, bioseparations, and biosensors) and Engineering of Biological Processes (a broader course on bioreactors, bioprocessing, enzymatic conversions, and cell culture (animal and plant)). The first course is a technical elective, whereas the second one is required of all ABE undergraduates. The goals of these courses are similar: to provide experience in analyzing biological systems and in designing processes which provide the optimal environment for use of the biological entity. A difficulty in teaching these courses is the varied level of preparation of the students in this area. Undergraduate students in our department focus on biosystems, soil and water resources, or power and machinery. This provides a sizeable challenge in selecting topics in the P ge 782.1 “Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ” 2002, American Society for Engineering Education” Engineering of Biological Processes course which is required of all students. Topics which rely on substantial biological science background require either too much or too little background knowledge. Approximately half of the students enter this course having already taken a fundamental cell biology course, while the remaining students have taken more applied courses in plant or soil sciences. To address this challenge, substantial portions of each course are dedicated to topics which differ from the academic experiences of most students but for which most students may have some practical, out-of-the-classroom experience. Course material is divided into several self-contained modules which include presentation of chemical and biological fundamentals, engineering fundamentals and applications (laboratory exercises, design projects, or demonstrations). Table I provides the topics presented. Topic Biological Aspects Engineering Analysis Design Fermentation cell growth & metabolism kinetics fermentation equipment Microbes & food spoilage & sterilization heat transfer sterilization equipment Bioprocess cell-environment, interactions separations, biosensors, and control removal of cells from fuel Biological degradation biofilms, cell adhesion and motility mass transport oxygen transfer requirements Rheology food processing fluid mechanics pumping of nonNewtonian fluids Mixing shear sensitivity, oxygen requirements fluid mechanics mixing power requirements Conversion processes enzymes – aqueous solutions, immobilized, non-aqueous solutions kinetics starch conversion; non-aqueous enzymology Cell culture immunology, toxicology, and animal cell growth kinetics, bioreactors bioreactor scale up Table I: Topics presented in two biosystems engineering courses highlighting the biological and engineering aspects of each. For each module, course material begins with the chemical and biological fundamentals required for a basic understanding of the system, followed by engineering analysis approaches or tools. These two aspects are brought together in a final capstone project which is either a small design project, a laboratory exercise, a demonstration or a combination. Laboratory exercises which have recently been used are presented in Table II. In such projects, ties are made between traditional techniques (fermentation) to new methods and recent developments in the field (such as the use of metabolic engineering to improve production strains).

NEW DESIGNS ON TEACHING BIOLOGICAL ENGINEERING

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  • CATEGORY : ANIMAL SCIENCE
  • TYPE : PROJECT MATERIAL
  • FORMAT : MICROSOFT WORD
  • ATTRIBUTE : Documentation Only
  • PAGES : 45 Pages
  • CHAPTERS : 1 - 5
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The field of biological engineering has evolved tremendously in recent years due to advances in both fundamental understanding of biological systems and in application of engineering methods to utilize this information. To be competitive in the field, graduates of biological engineering programs must have a diverse background which not only is grounded in engineering fundamentals, but also mindful of biological advances. Such requirements of new professionals bring continuing demands on how biological engineering should be taught. At The University of Arizona, the Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE) Department has revised its course offerings in the biological engineering area. This presentation will discuss how two courses have been revised to integrate: use of the internet, discussions of recent technological advances, design projects, and laboratory exercises. After several years of poorlyreceived use of the internet, an improved approach was developed resulting in nearly all students making use of the information on a more than weekly basis. Students responded positively to these changes and performed well compared to students in previous offerings. Biosystems engineering courses The approach we have used at The University of Arizona to teaching biological (or biosystems) engineering courses has been to incorporate engineering fundamentals with biological concepts into practical applications and demonstrations. This manuscript will focus on two courses titled Ag.. animal science project topics

NEW DESIGNS ON TEACHING BIOLOGICAL ENGINEERING