We present a 10 week long project-based course on mechatronics that combines lab exercises with an open-ended team project that takes the students from a very basic understanding through development of a small ground robot. Students' basic skill sets are developed using team weekly lab assignments covering software, analog electronics, rapid prototyping and fabrication techniques, and motor drive using a microcontroller. An open ended team project (specifically Slug Spackler's Revenge in 2009) gives the students an opportunity to put these skills to use and demonstrate their ability to synthesize the knowledge. A public competition is held at the end to demonstrate these projects, and is very well attended. Student evaluations indicate that this course, though extremely demanding, provides a peak engineering experience that they carry with them well beyond their educational careers.
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