Each year Solve-TAD partners with universities across Victoria and NSW to transfer assistive technology expertise to an emerging workforce of aspiring engineers and allied health professionals.
Working with academics and department heads at some of Australia’s most prominent universities, Solve-TAD’s unique (clinical–technical) business model and clinical process is now fittingly embedded in course curriculum. Solve-TAD occupational therapists (OT) and Engineers support students to enhance knowledge and spark engagement through the delivery of interactive presentations, project co-design opportunities. Students majoring in occupational therapy, biomedical and mechanical engineering receive invaluable exposure to front-line therapists and real-life cases.
Last week, we were privileged to guest lecture at Melbourne University to Mechanical Engineers as part of a subject that Solve-TAD helped create in 2020 – Human Centred Mechanical Design.
Human Centred Mechanical Design
This subject provides a project-based learning experience to design and develop a proof-of-concept prototype mechanical device that addresses a need for a person living with disability. Projects are defined by real-life challenges provided by people with a lived experience of disability who also help mentor teams. The goal is to engage in human-centred design thinking that is socially, technically and financially sensible and that delivers products that are feasible, desirable and viable. Topics covered include human-centred design principles, the design thinking approach to problem solving, life as a person with disability and engineering ethics.
On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:
- Demonstrate in depth understanding of the foundational principles of human-centred design thinking.
- Understand the challenges faced by people living with disability.
- Gain a broad understanding of the role of engineering in improving lives.
- Appreciate and critically evaluate the role, function and design of existing assistive technologies and identify limitations of these technologies.
- Undertake a critical and empathetic analysis of a complex problem.
- Exercise their engineering design capability to prototype a solution and evaluate it in a systematic way.
Lecture review – Hassan and Tom
It was wonderful to be able to come together with current students at Melbourne University to show how human centred mechanical design works in the real world.
Our marketing coordinator Tom Henskens shared insights into disability, disability in Australia, and focused on how the NDIS works.
Our lead engineer Hassan Malik then spoke about projects that we have recently been working on, with a key focus on the recent car transfer simulators completed in recent months.
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