Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy

Use the motivational effects of robotics to excite students about STEM

Robotics Academy Certified Training for VEX EDR (On-site)

With five days of hands-on training, learn how to teach using ROBOTC. Using VEX Robotics hardware, learn how to utilize the EDR, navigate the LCD display, and work with multiple sensors!

Introduction to the ROBOTC Programming Language

– How to program in a syntax-based language
– How to break down robot’s “big” tasks into manageable behaviors
– Using pseudocode
– How to downloading ROBOTC firmware
– How to download and run programs on robot
– Basic movements
– Improved movements with VEX Quadrature Encoders
– Advanced programming – loops, conditionals, functions, parameters, and variables
– Remote control with VEX joysticks
– How to assign functions to joystick buttons
– Additional sensors including the Ultrasonic Rangefinder and Limit Switch
– How to run a VEX Competition
– Learn how to program and operate the EDR system
– Teaching and classroom tools
– Troubleshooting and tips

Day 1 – The morning will introduce how to break down your robot’s tasks into manageable Behaviors, how to do Program Planning, what Firmware is and how to download it, and how to download and run programs on your robot. In the afternoon, you will program your robot to maneuver through a pre-planned course using ROBOTC Graphical Natural Language with timing and Encoder-based movements, and then using the different Sensors in the VEX system.

Day 2 – In the morning, you will learn how to improve your robot’s decision making capability by adding Loops and Conditional Statements into your ROBOTC programs. In the afternoon, you will transition into text-based ROBOTC and learn how to turn Behaviors you’ve written into efficient Functions. You will also learn how Parameters, or Variables, can be used to make Functions more usable.

Day 3 – In the morning you will learn how to use signals from the VEXNet Joystick Controller to enable remote control in your programs. You will use the joysticks to control the robots drive train, and Timers to determine how long you maintain control. In the afternoon you will learn how to combine signals from the VEXnet buttons and the Limit Switch/Potentiomer sensors to precisely control the robot arm. You will also learn how to assign Behaviors to the VEXNet buttons, causing the robot to perform a series of actions when a button is pressed.

Day 4 – In the morning you will learn how to use the Ultrasonic Sensor to detect objects and the Line Tracking Sensors to detect and track lines. The afternoon session will continue with line tracking algorithms and will lead into advanced debugging using the VEX LCD screen and accurate turning using the Gyroscopic Sensor. The class session will culminate in a challenge that incorporates all of the topics and lessons learned over the past four days.

Day 5 – This class session serves as a wrap up to answer any outstanding questions and/or conclude any unfinished instruction. You will also learn about the Robotics Academy’s emerging technology and will receive live demos (including hands-on software) of the Robot Virtual Worlds software. You will be introduced to the current VEX Robotics Competition and VEX IQ Challenge. You will receive a CD containing worksheets, PowerPoint presentations, pictures, and videos that were used in presentations during the week at Carnegie Mellon.

Class content is subject to change.

Class attendees use Robotic Academy’s computers, robot kits, curriculum, and programming software during the week. No extra purchases of any hardware or software for this course are necessary.

If you would like to purchase additional Robotics Education materials, you can do so by visiting the VEX Robotics Store.


Tuition Cost - $1099

Tuition includes 5 days of on-site training and use of Robotic Academy’s computers, robot kits, curriculum, and programming software during the week. You do not need to purchase any hardware or software for this course. Lunch is provided as part of tuition Monday through Thursday.

– ACT 48 credits / 36 hours per class (for Pennsylvania teachers only)
– Certificate of Completion of course ‘graduates’ – may be used to apply for Continuing Education hours