As the world becomes increasingly challenged by global warming and complex issues, the Faculty of Engineering has defined a new paradigm in education. An alternative learning pathway, the Design-Centric Programme (DCP) was launched in 2009, providing a platform for learning that brings together engineering, form, function, aesthetics, culture and lifestyle. In 2016, the DCP was enhanced with a dose of innovation and enterprise via the Innovation & Design-Centric Programme (iDCP). The iDCP gives students a broader scope to realize and capture value from their ideas. Through the design process, students learn to create solutions from multi-disciplinary perspectives. They are encouraged to challenge current assumptions of how people interact with products and to critically evaluate the ability of current products and services to serve the needs of people. Students adopt a user-centred approach to understand, visualise and describe users in the context of how people live, work and play. iDCP will take students further by allowing them to explore and plan business start-ups.
In 2017, the programme reached a third milestone. It was formalized as a Second Major and renamed as the Innovation & Design Programme (iDP). We are now open to students outside of Engineering, thus becoming a truly multi-disciplinary programme. We look forward to welcoming students from other parts of the NUS campus to join our students in their classes.
Four iDP students (Pun Tze Yang Timothy, Dhanashree Lyra Govindaraju, Farm Zheng Hao, and Lai Ying Xian), created an intelligent digital watch paired with a smart pillbox to help working elderly suffering from chronic illnesses to remember to take their medication on the go. The group’s inspiration comes from the observation of the aging population in Singapore as they were taking EG2201 (Introduction to Design Thinking).
In April, our students developed a quadcopter drone that is powered completely with solar energy, without the need for batteries. This feat is a first in Asia.
Rachiket Arya and Vairavan Ramanathan participated and won in the recent ActInSpace space tech start-up hackathon organised by European Space Agency (ESA) and Centre National D'études Spatiales (CNES).
A group of 24 students and 2 staff from the iDP went on a 2-week study trip to Shenzhen and Hong Kong in July 2018 to explore the vibrant maker culture in many well-known organizations in China.