In addition to our pillar programming, the Wond’ry hosts an array of academic courses that are centered around innovation, entrepreneurship, technology, and making. These are a few of the courses currently being taught at the Wond’ry:
Virtual Reality is a project-based introduction to Virtual Reality (VR), co-taught by faculty from Computer Science and History. VR is now a mainstream phenomenon. The New York Times provides VR journalism (and ships its subscribers cardboard viewers). Facebook owns the highest profile hardware manufacturer. Google, Microsoft and countless others are experimenting with hardware and content. In this course students from across the university will join students from Computer Science for an overview of the field of virtual reality, and substantive training in the appropriate tools. Furthermore, faculty mentors drawn from diverse disciplines will guide student teams to create real-world, consequential immersive VR simulations relevant to, and innovative in, their respective fields.
How to Make (Almost) Anything
Being able to make things with hand-tools and digital fabrication tools will help you quickly test ideas, communicate concepts to colleagues (or potential investors) and solve problems in your life. This course provides an introduction to computer aided design (CAD), rapid prototyping methods, electronics and the strategies to actualize your ideas including design thinking and axiomatic design.
This course begins by building proficiency with Autodesk Fusion 360, a popular CAD platform, and then closes the loop by exploring several methods for converting digital designs into physical prototypes. Tools and techniques that are explored include laser cutters, 3D printers, molding and casting polymers, vacuum forming and sewing. Lastly, the course explores off-the-shelf electronic solutions for integrating sensors and motors into your designs.
This course is open to all sophomores and juniors. You do not need to be an engineering major to enroll.
New Product Design
This exciting innovation course in product design and development teaches a framework and uses tested methods that aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs can use to understand the needs that drive adoption of a new product or service by users. Students work in teams to develop a design brief and detailed specifications for a new product or service. Methods covered include camera studies, interviews, creating composite character profiles, brainstorming, and user-driven prototyping.
This new experiential learning course focuses on the business and legal issues involved in technology commercialization. Throughout this course, interdisciplinary teams of graduate students (1 Ph.D. student, 2 MBA students, 2 J.D. students) research these issues in the context of the Ph.D student’s dissertation. Topics include identification of entrepreneurial opportunities, fundamentals of industry analysis, legal means of protecting intellectual property, customer discovery, alliances, and commercialization environments.
History Commons Seminar
This seminar will introduce the basic tenets of the proposed Immersion Vanderbilt program and approach discipline-specific responses and opportunities to develop creative and independent projects during a student’s four years at Vanderbilt. By introducing the general concept of immersion and then by grounding immersive experience within the disciplines, students in this seminar will have opportunities to engage, to question, and to forge change. Students in this seminar will work with a faculty seminar director to identify experiences and projects that could well shape them for the rest of their lives. This specific seminar will focus on combining the questions, tools, and techniques across the sciences, technology, and humanities to promote novel explorations.
Commons Seminar. [Formerly HIST 99] Topics vary. General
Elective credit only.  (No AXLE credit).
Cyber Physical Systems
Cyber-Physical Systems. Modeling, design, and analysis
of cyber-physical systems that integrate computation and communication
with physical systems. Modeling paradigms and models of computation,
design techniques and implementation choices, model-based
analysis and verification. Project that covers the modeling, design, and
analysis of CPS. .
Engineering Common Seminar
This seminar will introduce the basic tenets of the proposed Immersion Vanderbilt program and approach discipline-specific responses and opportunities to develop creative and independent projects during a student’s four years at Vanderbilt. By introducing the general concept of immersion and then by grounding immersive experience within the disciplines, students in this seminar will have opportunities to engage, to question, and to forge change. Students in this seminar will work with a faculty seminar director to identify experiences and projects that could well shape them for the rest of their lives. This specific seminar will focus on • Introduction to Immersion • Experiencing Immersion • Introduction to key tools and key individuals who will help shape future design projects and experiences • Providing an individual student driven plan for future experience
Engineering Commons Seminar. Topics vary. Open elective
Literature Science and Technology
Literature, Science, and Technology. [Formerly ENGL
243] The relationship of science and technology to literature, film, and
popular media. Focus on such topics as digital technology, genetics, and
the representation of science in particular periods, genres, movements,
and critical theories. Repeat credit for students who have completed
Applied Human Development
Introduction to the processes of human development and how such development can be influenced. Emphasis is placed on social development and implications for solving personal and professional problems. The course focuses on late adolescent and young adult development.
Want to hold your innovation-related class at the Wond’ry? Contact the registrar’s office for more information.