Back to Basics: Sketching, Not CAD is key

Recent research shows that replacing traditional skills and learning entirely with software-based tools might not always be beneficial.

Researchers from Georgia Institute of Technology and Texas A&M University note that the willingness to generate free-hand sketches are critical skills for engineers. With the advent of CAD, schools no longer teach drafting, prompting a concern over the lost art of free-hand sketching. They found that including free-hand sketching in engineering improved the students' spatial visualisation skills in a way that using Computer Aided Design (CAD) software alone did not.


Hilton EC, Gamble T, Li W, Hammond T, Linsey JS. Back to Basics: Sketching, Not CAD, Is the Key to Improving Essential Engineering Design Skills. ASME. International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, Volume 7: 30th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology():V007T06A051. doi:10.1115/DETC2018-86325,