Problem Solving AKAEngineering Design Process Uxbridge High School
Problem Solving Introduction• Technology solves problems.• Problem Solving meets a need.• Problems can involve any combination of the environment, society and/or an individual.• Carefully thought out, multi-step procedure must be used for the best results.• Problem Solving is also known as the ENGINEERING DESIGN PROCESS.
The Problem Solving Spiral (Model may be a circle, steps or other shape) Define The Problem Clearly Begin Production Redesign as needed 1 Gather 8 InformationCommunicate 2the Solution 7 You can restart at Think Of any step if revisions Alternative 3 are needed. SolutionsEvaluate or 6 Choose Thetest the 4 Best SolutionSolution 5 Make a Prototype
Scientific Method & Design Process Compared• State the problem • State the problem• Gather information • Gather information• Form a Hypothesis • Create alternative – an explanation that can solutions be tested • Select the best solution• Perform the • Create a prototype experiment • Evaluate or test the• Analyzes the results prototype• Repeat the process • Communicate the with other samples results of the test – Reporting the findings • Redesign as needed Note how some steps are similar.
Describe The Problem Page 1 of 2• What is the problem?• It is helpful to Clearly Identify The Problem• Two ways to help identify the problem: ~Write the problem in one or two sentences. – Write it down helps to organize thoughts and understanding. ~ Read your sentences or say the problem out loud – The best way is to say it to others. Listeners help to check if it is truly the problem or is more to the problem.
Stating the problem in Detail Page 1 of 2•Describe the problem, List goals of desired results, specifications & limitations. –List Goals of your solution or what exactly the solution needs to accomplish. – List all design constraints which are the Specifications or regulations, also include the Limitations, which is the resources that are available or not available.
Gather Background Information• Research saves valuable resources – (Labor, Materials, Energy, Capital ($) and Time)• Helps to design a better product or service• Extra time spent on this step most often saves time etc. later.• Examine current issues, events and trends• Companies do market research to see if customers want a product (Market Analysis, Product Surveys)• Explore other options via internet, library, interviews, Etc.
Develop Alternative Solutions• Alternative Solutions are different possibilities to the same problem often called alternatives.• Five ways of finding alternatives: Past experience, Trial and error, Brainstorming, Insight or by Accident• Brainstorming - each person makes suggestions without evaluation during the brainstorm meeting. – Rule of Brainstorming: Listen to all ideas as it may lead to other ideas or solutions. No Put Downs! – Good brainstorming practice is to write every idea down for later reference.
Select The Best Solution• Compare the solutions and the stated problem to see if the goals or intentions are met and it is within the resource limitations.• List advantages and disadvantage of each alternative to aid in selecting the best solution.• Other considerations – Impacts on society, environment and individuals should be a consideration. – Values and morals - the way we feel about something – Tradeoffs - A compromise - we accept some risks in order to obtain benefits Y o u C a n ’t a l wa y s g e t wh a t y o u wa n t . B u t if y o u t r y s o me t ime , y o u g e t wh a t y o u
Create a Prototype• Implement or Actually building or creating the solution – put the solution into effect – to create the actual solution• A prototype is a working model• Simulation - a away of testing solution in near real conditions (astronaut & pilot training)
Evaluate The Solution• Prototypes or Working Models - usually first build and used to test or evaluate a solutions to see if they meet design constraints.• Design constraints are specifications and limitations.• Technology often becomes obsolete. – Companies that continue to evaluate often develop new (up-grades) technologies and avoid having the company become obsolete.
Communicate your solutions• Make an Engineering Presentation. Include how the solution best meets the needs of the problem.• Discuss impacts to society, individuals, and the environment.• An explanation of the trade-offs for each solution and why this design is the best solution.
Begin production Redesign as needed• Redesign based on information gathered during tests and presentations.• When design is finalized begin mass production.• Continue to monitor after production. – Improve products based on consumer input. – Improve production methods to reduce costs, improve safety for consumers and employees. – Best solutions work well, are economical and cause the least harm to people and the environment.
Scientific Method verses Design Process• The steps in a side by side comparison are very similar. – For example compare these two: • Collect information with gather information • Performing an experiment is the same as testing a hypothesis which is similar to Evaluate or test a prototype.• Alternate way viewing: The Scientific Method can be viewed as the Gather Information of the design process. (See next slide for illustration)
Scientific Method & Design Process Compared• State the problem • State the problem• Collect information • Gather information• Form a Hypothesis • Create alternative – an explanation that can solutions be tested • Select the best• Perform the solution experiment • Create a prototype• Analyzes the results • Evaluate or test the• Repeat the process prototype with other samples • Communicate the – Reporting the findings results of the test • Redesign as needed
Background to Problem Solving• For the best results follow the problem solving procedures, don’t skip steps.• Keep a record of all ideas.• Remember good solutions often require trade-offs.• The best solutions work well, are economical, and causes the least harm to people or the environment. Technology does have positive and negative impacts!Depends on values, who possesses the technology, and the trade-offs
Thinking Skills• Critical Thinking Skills - used to analyze problems and make judgement• Creative Thinking Skills - used to develop original ideas or improve others people’s ideas• Decision-Making skills - used to make a choice among several possibilities – Communicate possible solutions with Drawings and/or Descriptions – Continue to develop possible solutions as new information and resources are available.
Scientific Method• Make Observations• Collect information• Form a Hypothesis - an explanation that can be tested• Perform the experiment• Analyzes the results• Repeat the process with other samples – Reporting the findings