Asee peer logo

Alternate Assessments to Support Formative Evaluations in an Asynchronous Online Computer Engineering Graduate Course

Download Paper |


2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

Assessing Learning Outcomes for Flipped Classrooms, Recruitment and Research Internships, and Alternate Assessments for Online Courses

Tagged Division

Graduate Studies

Page Count




Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Ritushree Chatterjee Iowa State University

visit author page

Ritushree Chatterjee is an Instructional Development Specialist working at Engineering-LAS Online Learning at Iowa State University. She did her undergraduate in Chemistry from Delhi University, India and subsequently received her MS in Environmental Chemistry from Iowa State University.
She received her second MS in Education with specialization in Curriculum and Instructional Technology and her Instructional Design certificate from Iowa State University in 2015.
As an instructional designer, she assists faculty in the College of Engineering and Liberal Arts and Sciences, to design and develop asynchronous online and blended courses, providing technical, pedagogical support and instructional support. She has supported over 25 faculty members successfully transition to the online learning environment and has supported over 50 online courses.

visit author page


Ahmed E. Kamal Iowa State University

visit author page

Ahmed E. Kamal received a B.Sc. (distinction with honors) and an M.Sc. both from Cairo University, Egypt, and an M.A.Sc. and a Ph.D. both from the University of Toronto, Canada, all in Electrical Engineering in 1978, 1980, 1982 and 1986, respectively. He is currently a professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Iowa State University.
Kamal's research interests include wireless sensor networks, cognitive radio networks, optical networks and performance evaluation. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and a senior member of the Association of Computing Machinery. He is an IEEE Communications Society Distinguished Lecturer for 2013 and 2014. He received the best paper award of the IEEE Globecom 2008 Symposium on Ad Hoc and Sensors Networks Symposium, and the best paper award for papers published in Computers and Control in IEE journals in 1993.
Kamal serves on the editorial boards of the IEEE Communications Surveys and Tutorials, the Elsevier Computer Networks (COMNET) journal and the Elsevier Optical Switching and Networking journal. He was named the COMNET Editor of the Year in 2008.
Kamal was the chair or co-chair of the Technical Program Committees of a number of conferences including the Optical Networks and Systems Symposia of the IEEE Globecom 2007 and the IEEE Globecom 2010, and the Cognitive Radios and Networks Symposium of the IEEE Globecom 2012 conference. He will also serve as the co-chair of the IEEE Globecom 2014 Cognitive Radios and Networks Symposium. He also served as the chair of the Computer Systems section in the Computer Science Grants Evaluation group of the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada. He is currently the secretary of the IEEE Communications Society Technical Committee on Transmission, Access and Optical Systems.

visit author page


Zhengdao Wang Iowa State University

visit author page

Zhengdao Wang received his B.S. degree in Electronic Engineering and Information Science from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC), 1996, the M.Sc. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Virginia, 1999, and Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Minnesota, 2002. He is now with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the Iowa State University. His interests are in the areas of signal processing, communications, and information theory. He served as an associate editor for IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology from April 2004 to April 2006, an Associate Editor for IEEE Signal Processing Letters between August 2005 and August 2008, and an Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing between 2013 and 2015. He was a co-recipient of the IEEE Signal Processing Magazine Best Paper Award in 2003 and the IEEE Communications Society Marconi Paper Prize Award in 2004, and the EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing Best Paper Award, in 2009. He is serving as an Editor for The IEEE Signal Processing Society Online Video Library, and an Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications.

visit author page

Download Paper |


This paper describes the design and implementation of alternate assessments in an asynchronous online computer engineering graduate course on cognitive radio networks. The course is designed based on the premise of formative evaluations in online learning. Formative evaluations provide means for both the instructors and learners to engage with the content and with each other in a meaningful way to create an enriching learning experience (Gikandi, Morrow and Davis, 2011). Moreover, designing assessments that challenges students’ thought-process and creativity is the need of the hour in engineering pedagogy. This is implemented in the course as structured threaded discussion forums, governed by instructors, that provide thought-provoking guiding questions followed by peer discussion. This paper also explores the design and implementation of virtual laboratory sessions complementing the bi-weekly homework assignments and a final project. This essay describes briefly the assessment design decisions, based on the overall course learning outcomes, taken to suit the online learners. This includes a regular feedback mechanism from both the instructors and the learners and opportunities to learn from each other. Students partake in two voluntary and anonymous surveys, to voice their feedback on the assessments and their learning experience, in general. The results of the surveys will be shared. The aim of this paper is to inform, the community of asynchronous online computer engineering educators, of alternate assessment techniques based on this cognitive radio networks class, and the ways to implement those successfully in an online environment.

Chatterjee, R., & Kamal, A. E., & Wang, Z. (2016, June), Alternate Assessments to Support Formative Evaluations in an Asynchronous Online Computer Engineering Graduate Course Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26549

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2016 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015