June 15, 2019
June 15, 2019
June 19, 2019
This paper presents design, development, and implementation of a new online Engineering Dynamics class for post-secondary sophomores. This class was offered for the first time at Stony Brook University in the summer of 2016 to 70 students who came from 11 different universities.
Engineering Dynamics, which deals with the science of motion is a core class of undergraduate Mechanical Engineering discipline. The anecdotal and quantitative feedback from the students indicate that the class is of appreciable difficulty in content and presents a major roadblock to timely graduation rate. Dynamics typically requires students to apply newly acquired knowledge of vector- and differential- and integral-calculus, differential equation from their freshmen and sophomore year. What makes this even more difficult is that Engineering Dynamics, by its very nature, is organic and connected -- topics sequentially build upon previous concepts. This prevents a fragmented and discrete treatment and presentation of the course material and in turn increases cognitive load on students.
It is widely believed among the students that this class is best taken in-person, while the paucity of an online version of the class seems to indicate that the educators have not been completely onboard either with the creation of one. This could be attributed to either the lack of effectiveness in delivering the course outcomes using an online medium or the difficulties associated with creating such a class.
However, these challenges also pose an opportunity to create a well-designed and executed online Dynamics class, which can help students overcome some of their fears and difficulties and also help departments meet their program-level and student-outcomes. An online version of the class consisting of topical videos of the lecture, on-line quizzes and homework, and assessments could 1) facilitate self-study and -pacing of the material on part of students, 2) enable problem solving and critical discussion between students and instructors using an online forum, and 3) scale-up the class to a large number of students.
Purwar, A., & Scott, C. A. (2019, June), An Online Engineering Dynamics Class for College Sophomores: Design, Implementation, and Assessment Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. https://peer.asee.org/32082
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