Our new teams need direction on what a good engineering notebook should be. With the rule changes this year the engineering notebook carries more weight, so it is important to understand what the judges are expecting.
If you search on the VEX IQ and REC websites you will eventually find these three references: [LIST=1]
The sample pages of the Robotics Engineering Notebook seem more appropriate for a patent application (witnessed by signatures, cross hash and initial all blank areas…) than a VEX IQ team, and the example video is similar. They both recommend a bound notebook that is shared by the entire team and is hand written in permanent ink. That’s just not practical. In tomorrow’s world there will still be a place for individuals to keep personal handwritten notebooks, but I doubt that any group of engineers will share a single notebook for collaborative design work.
Many IQ teams use a looseleaf notebook, because it works. Content from different sources can be added as the season progresses. Looking at the Design Award Rubric this approach seems acceptable. The rubric does not preclude notebooks that are kept electronically and then printed either. The example notebook from two years ago looks like it was done that way. What is important is that the notebook shows the design progression and tells the story of the robot, the team, and their journey. http://www.roboticseducation.org/doc…team-5509a.pdf
So what are the judges instructed to look for in an engineering notebook? Do they follow the rubric, or are they looking for a hard bound hand written notebook?