Quantitative Engineering Analysis (QEA)

Two students work together to build a boat prototype

The goal of QEA was to create a class where the students saw the whole process, everything from the theory through the physics and the application to solve an engineering challenge using the mathematical tools all in one context.

QEA is a second and third semester course that provides an integrated and project-based approach to teaching concepts in math, science, and engineering. In the first semester of the course (QEA I) topics include statics and multi-variable calculus taught in the context of a boat design project, linear algebra in the context of facial recognition software, and mechanics and controls in the context of mobile robots. In the second semester (QEA II), material focuses on topics in the frequency domain analysis of signals, dynamics in two and three dimensions, and basic controls including transfer functions, proportional, and proportional-differential control. The course uses projects to contextualize material and places an emphasis on self-directed learning. QEA is a prototype course that continues to undergo iteration at Olin.