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Adapting Traditional Electrical Engineering Courses For Non Traditional Students

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

ECE Pedagogy and Assessment II

Tagged Division

Electrical and Computer

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.148.1 - 13.148.6



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Paper Authors

author page

Dale Buechler University of Wisconsin-Platteville

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Adapting Traditional Electrical Engineering Courses for Non-Traditional Students


At the request of local industry, the University of Wisconsin-Platteville recently started remote electrical engineering collaborative programs at two of the University of Wisconsin System’s two-year schools. These programs were specifically developed to allow place-bound nontraditional students, who work during the day, to obtain their entire under-graduate electrical engineering degree on a part-time basis without having to travel to the main campus located 90 miles and 180 miles away respectively. Students in the program typically take two engineering courses per semester from the on-site faculty supplemented by distance course offerings as needed. Each of these courses has the same content as the ones offered at the main campus, including laboratory work and semester design projects. Courses in Math, Science, English, and the Humanities are offered by the local two-year school. The specific needs of our non- traditional students and the ways the course offerings at our site have been adapted to meet those needs are discussed. The unique challenges of this type of program are also discussed.


One of the main objectives of the College of Engineering, Mathematics, and Science at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville (UW-Platteville) is to ensure that its students gain the knowledge and develop the mental skills and personal characteristics necessary to become successful citizens and professionals who can meet the present needs of industry. In recent years, companies within our state have found it much harder to meet their engineering needs. They have unsuccessfully tried to meet these engineering needs with graduates from other regions of the country, only to find that these engineers, without any ties to this region, leave after a few years. At the request of the local industry, collaborative electrical engineering (EE) programs were started in the fall of 2006 in the Fox Valley and in Rock County, both areas of the state that have a strong manufacturing presence. These programs are located at the University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley (UW-FV) and the University of Wisconsin-Rock County (UW-RC), which are two-year schools within the larger University of Wisconsin System. At each site, a small engineering building, consisting of a media classroom, a laboratory, offices, and a storage facility, was constructed and paid for by funds from local industry and private donations. As part of the collaborative agreement, prerequisite courses (math, science, english, humanities, etc.) are offered by the local two-year school, while all courses within the engineering major are offered by faculty from UW-Platteville, under their ABET accreditation. The creation of the EE collaborative program at UW-FV joined an established collaborative mechanical engineering (ME) begun in the fall of 20021, while the program at UW-RC was established from scratch.

Buechler, D. (2008, June), Adapting Traditional Electrical Engineering Courses For Non Traditional Students Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3632

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