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Donald Richards

Professor of Mechanical Engineering

Dr. Donald Richards' areas of specialization include fluid mechanics, thermodynamics and heat exchanger design. He also has worked extensively in curriculum design and has been part of two National Science Foundation-sponsored initiatives: Making Academic Change Happening, which has created academic change agents at several U.S. colleges and universities, and the Foundation Coalition Project, an engineering education coalition. Dr. Richards wrote the textbook Basic Engineering Science: A Systems, Accounting, and Modeling Approach, and has industry experience working as an engineer for General Atomic Corporation. Check out his personal web page.

Teaching Interests

  • Thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and heat transfer
  • Advanced thermodynamics
  • Gas dynamics
  • Air conditioning
  • Conservation and accounting principles for engineering science

Research Experiences

  • Second Law analysis
  • Engineering education and curriculum design
  • Experimental heat transfer
  • Application of a systems, accounting and modeling approach to teach basic engineering science

Publications & Presentations

  • Richards, D. E. and Collura, M., “Understanding a New Paradigm for Engineering Science Education Using Knowledge about Student Learning,” Proceedings of the ASEE Conference, American Society for Engineering Education, 2015
  • Richards, D. E., “Systems, Accounting & Modeling Approach,” University of Western Australia, 2012
  • Richards, D. E., “Educational Innovations from the Foundation Coalition,” Olin College of Engineering, Boston, 2001
  • Richards, D. E., “Integrating the Mechanical Engineering Core,” Proceedings of ASEE Conference, American Society for Engineering Education, 6,137-6,156, 2001
  • Richards, D. E., Engineering Science—A Systems, Accounting and Modeling Approach, 2001
  • Richards, D. E., “Innovations in Engineering Education: What Makes Innovation Possible and Sustainable,” (Invited Panelist) Frontiers in Education Conference, Kansas City, 2000
  • Litzinger, T. A. and Richards, D. E., “Thermal Science Education in 2001,” Mechanical Engineering Education Conference, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., 2000
  • Wark, K. Jr. and Richards, D. E., Thermodynamics (Sixth Edition), McGraw-Hill Publishers, New York, 1999
  • Richards, D. E. and Glover, C. J., “A Conservation-Law-Based Curriculum: An Engineering Perspective,” Teaching Introductory Physics, Conservation Laws First: An NSF Faculty Enhancement Conference, Cambridge, Mass., 1998
  • Richards, D. E., “Engineering A Changing Curriculum,” SWE Magazine, Society of Women Engineers, Vol. 42(5), 12-16, 1996

Awards & Honors

  • Charles F. MacQuigg Outstanding Teaching, The Ohio State University College of Engineering, 1988

Academic Degrees

  • PhD, Ohio State University, 1981
  • MS, Iowa State University, 1974
  • BS, Kansas State University, 1972