How Deep is Your Knowledge? Consideration to the Breadth and Depth of Knowledge of CAD/CAM in M3-powered Technology CTE Classes Conference Paper uri icon


  • The Making as Micro-manufacture (M3) model describes an approach for authentic learning experiences in the classroom. M3 couples the practice of Making with production engineering processes in an effort to produce highly customized, low batch-volume products, such as instructional science kits for elementary school classrooms. Production of such instructional science kits serves as a motivating scenario for students in M3. High school students learn a myriad of skills in M3 in particular to Making. Basic Making skills include elementary electronics, use of computer controlled fabrication machines, and programming. Of these skills, Computer-Aided Design/Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) are a key facet to the use of fabrication tools (e.g., 3D printers or laser cutters) in the M3 model. One problem, when taken into consideration of an M3 implementation, is to what ends should CADCAM skills be covered in the class. How can students be effectively taught CAD/CAM essentials for practical use in M3 while still avoiding a deep dive into the minutiae of the software/hardware considerations? This paper highlights a CAD/CAM sequence taught within an online distanced M3 powered class. We demonstrate how various high-school technology career and technology education (CTE) classes are taught core CAD/CAM skills and how students and college-aged STEM mentors work together to achieve learning goals. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of a subset of the students in-class activities (e.g., how students use cognitive spatial processes to use CAD/CAM system) and products produced during this sequence are reviewed (e.g., mentors critique produced CAD designs for feasibility for 3D printing) , illustrating how students incorporate CAD/CAM knowledge in M3 and characterize the approach and end-products by students.

name of conference

  • 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access Proceedings

published proceedings

  • 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access Proceedings

author list (cited authors)

  • Okundaye, O., Natarajarathinam, M., Kuttolamadom, M., Quek, F., & Chu, S. L.

complete list of authors

  • Okundaye, Osazuwa||Natarajarathinam, Malini||Kuttolamadom, Mathew||Quek, Francis||Chu, Sharon Lynn

publication date

  • July 2021