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Nephrotex is an epistemic game in which undergraduate engineering students role-play as professional engineers-in-training in order to develop the skills, knowledge, identity and values of engineers.
In Nephrotex, students are welcomed as interns into the fictitious company Nephrotex, whose core technology is the ultrafiltration unit, or dialyzer, of a hemodialysis machine. The students’ assigned task is to design a next-generation dialyzer that incorporates carbon nanotubes and chemical surfactants into the hollow fibers of the dialyzer unit. Since design is a foundational discipline for engineers, we focus on bringing engineering design to first-year engineering students.