Janet Y. Tsai is a researcher and instructor in the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Colorado Boulder. Her research focuses on ways to encourage more students, especially women and those from nontraditional demographic groups, to pursue interests in the ﬁeld of engineering. Janet assists in recruitment and retention efforts locally, nationally, and internationally, hoping to broaden the image of engineering, science, and technology to include new forms of communication and problem solving for emerging grand challenges. A second vein of Janet's research seeks to identify the social and cultural impacts of technological choices made by engineers in the process of designing and creating new devices and systems. Her work considers the intentional and unintentional consequences of durable structures, products, architectures, and standards in engineering education, to pinpoint areas for transformative change.
qualitative data analysis, design thinking, inclusive design
GEEN 1400 - Engineering Projects
Spring 2018 / Fall 2018
First-year students solve real engineering design problems in interdisciplinary teams. Design projects vary by section. Curriculum focuses on iterative design process, teamwork and team dynamics, supporting design with testing and analysis, and technical writing. Completed projects are exhibited at an end-of-semester design expo. Students responsible for contributing towards their design project budget and poster costs, and purchasing safety glasses (approximately $75).
GEEN 3830 - Special Topics
Fall 2018 / Fall 2019
Explores topics of interest in engineering. Content varies by instructor and semester.
MCEN 3025 - Component Design
Application of mechanics and materials science to the detailed design of various machine elements including shafts, bearings, gears, brakes, springs, and fasteners. Emphasizes application and open-ended design problems.
MCEN 4026 - Manufacturing Processes and Systems
Fall 2019 / Spring 2020 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
Examines manufacturing processes for metals, polymers, and composites as well as manufacturing systems that integrate these processes. Lecture topics include forming, machining, joining, assembling, process integration, computer-aided manufacturing, and manufacturing system engineering.
MCEN 5055 - Advanced Product Design
Introduces engineering design and development of consumer products. Includes learning sketching, brainstorming, idea generation, design thinking, user-centered design, product requirements and specifications, product constraints, human factors, aesthetics, industrial design, intellectual property, concept prototyping, idea selection, tolerancing, cost estimating, design for assembly, and materials selection. Entails a semester-long team re-design of a consumer product.