Course Syllabus

Course Mission

This course is designed to help students develop employable and certifiable skills in parametric CAD modeling of mechanical components and assemblies. Students will work towards associate level certification in SOLIDWORKS and have the opportunity to take the CSWA exam. The course focuses on training students to think parametrically and to strategically capture design intent within 3D CAD models and assemblies.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Modeling: Students will be able to create 3D parametric models of mechanical components in SOLIDWORKS.
  2. Assemblies: Students will be able to create 3D parametric assemblies of mechanical systems in SOLIDWORKS.
  3. Drafting: Students will be able to read, interpret, and create basic ANSI standard mechanical drawings.

Required Materials and Technology

  • All instructional content is provided in the course, at no additional cost to students.
  • SOLIDWORKS Design software—provided by the Mechanical Engineering Department at no additional cost to students. Download and installation instructions are in the course.

System Requirements


  • Ensure you have the proper hardware and software setup to run SOLIDWORKS. SOLIDWORKS requires minimum system requirements. Please review these system requirements and obtain the proper hardware and software necessary to run it—SOLIDWORKS System Requirements.
    • If your computer is not capable of running the software. You must gain access to a computer in your community that is capable and allows you to install and run SOLIDWORKS.
    • If you are taking this course on-campus and cannot install the software on your own computer, you may use the computers in the Mechanical Engineering computer labs located in AUS 153. You will miss the points for the first specific assignment but at least you will be able to complete all of the other work in the course.
  • Note for Apple/Mac users: SOLIDWORKS does not run on Mac computers. Those using Mac computers need to either partition drives or install Parallels Desktop with Microsoft Windows. You can obtain both through the University Store Student Software link.
    • Parallels Desktop you must purchase but it is a significantly reduced rate. After logging in at the link above, select More Software. If you don't find Parallels in the "Most Popular" list, select Security & Utilities.
    • Microsoft Windows is also offered for a very small fee to students. Select the Microsoft tab and choose the appropriate operating system—refer to the SOLIDWORKS System Requirements above. Be sure to install the operating system on the Parallels side of your Mac.
  • Please read the I-Learn Computer Standards which contains information about anti-virus applications and internet speeds.

Course Structure

Students will progress through the semester by completing one unit each week and achieving competency in all three outcomes at a basic level (Units 1-6) and then at an intermediate level (Units 7-11). Units 12-14 provide enrichment assignments to solidify everything learned throughout the semester. A typical unit contains 5 required assignments

Industry Certification Exam

This course prepares students for the Certified SolidWorks Associate (CSWA) exam offered by SolidWorks which will add value to their resume. This exam covers basic parametric modeling, assemblies, and drafting in SolidWorks.

Design/Build Project

Weeks 12-13 allow campus students who are in Rexburg and have access to the Maker Labs to choose between two parallel paths.

  • Path A (Review and Enrichment): This path reviews all of the concepts throughout the semester and provides assignments that will enrich and deepen your understanding of the concepts..
  • Path B (Design/Build Project): This path allows students to apply what they have learned by designing and building a physical device. Students will learn to use the laser cutter in the BYU-Idaho Maker Lab which will be used to build the device. Only local students in Rexburg majoring in the AET, CE, ME, MET, and WET have access to the Maker Labs and would, therefore, be able to
    choose this option.

Due Dates and Late Penalty

Assignments are due on Wednesdays and Saturdays of each week at 11:59 pm. The first three assignments each week are due on Wednesdays and the last two assignments are due on Saturdays. For instance, assignments 2.1-2.3 are due on Wednesday of week-2 and assignments 2.4-2.5 are due on Saturday of week-2; and so forth. A penalty of 2% per day will be applied to each assignment that is completed after the due date so make sure you don't get behind.

Extra Credit

Nine extra credit assignments are offered throughout the course as shown in the table namely assignments 2.6, 3.6, 4.6, 5.6, 6.6, 7.6, 8.6, 9.6, and 10.6. Each extra credit assignment is worth 1% of the final grade. If you complete all 9 assignments you can add up to 9% extra credit to your final grade.

Course Outline

Course Structure Summary

Letter Grades

93%–100%  A
90%–93%    A-
86%–90%    B+
83%–86%    B
80%–83%    B-
76%–80%    C+
73%–76%    C
70%–73%    C-
66%–70%    D+
63%–66%    D
60%–63%    D-
> 60%           F

Keys to Success

BYU-Idaho Learning Model

All courses, including online courses, at BYU-Idaho follow a pattern of learning that enables students to take more responsibility for their own learning and for helping to teach one another. This pattern is called the Learning Model. Here are two pages to help you better understand the Learning Model.

Take Charge of your education by applying the Learning Model | Learning Model interactive tutorial

Tips for Success in this Course

  • As a three credit course, you should expect to spend around 9–15 hours per week (3–5 hours per credit-hour) completing course activities and assessments. Plan your weekly schedule wisely to set aside adequate study time and allow you to work at a healthy, steady pace throughout the course.
  • Read your Announcements and communications from your instructor each week before beginning the lesson. Your instructor will provide timely information about changes, expectations and other important things to note as you begin the lesson.
  • A Tips sheet is provided in the course, which provide tips on common errors and struggles students run into. We encourage you to look through the Tips sheet before beginning any assignment and refer to it, first, if you run into a problem trying to complete the assignment.

University Policies

Students with Disabilities

Brigham Young University-Idaho is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere that accommodates qualified persons with disabilities. If you have a disability and require accommodations, please contact the Disability Services Office at (208) 496-9210 or visit their website and follow the Steps for Receiving Accommodations. Reasonable academic accommodations are reviewed for all students who have qualified documented disabilities. Services are coordinated with students and instructors by the Disability Services Office.

[This course may require synchronous meetings. OR This course includes required synchronous meetings.] If you are currently registered with the Disability Services Office and need an interpreter or transcriber for these meetings, please contact the deaf and hard of hearing coordinator at (208) 496-9219.

Other University Policies

Student Honor and Other Policies

Please read through the document called University Policies. It gives important information about the following topics:

  • Student Honor
    • Academic Honesty
    • Student Conduct
      • Sexual Harassment
  • Student with Disabilities
  • Complaints and Grievances
  • Copyright Notice

Go to the Student Resources module to review further resources and information.

Course Summary:

Date Details Due