Asee peer logo

Applications Of Real Time Sensors In The Freshman Engineering Classroom

Download Paper |

Conference

2004 Annual Conference

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Instrumentation in the Classroom

Page Count

9

Page Numbers

9.213.1 - 9.213.9

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/13095

Download Count

19

Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

William J., Jr. Park

author page

Elizabeth A. Stephan

author page

Benjamin L. Sill

Download Paper |

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

Session 1359

Applications of Real-Time Sensors in the Freshman Engineering Classroom

Matthew W. Ohland, Elizabeth A. Stephan, Benjamin L. Sill, and William J. Park General Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634

Abstract

Clemson’s NSF-sponsored EXPerimental Engineering in Real-Time (EXPERT) project is designed to assess the efficacy of using real-time sensors in freshman engineering classes. We wish to determine if use of these devices enhances student understanding of both physical concepts and graphical representations of those phenomena.

Where parallel activities can be designed (one set with and one set without real-time sensors), the relative performance of students conducting sensor-based laboratories will help isolate the pedagogical benefit of using the sensors. It is also clear that the sensors are particularly useful in cases where no parallel educational design can be devised—situations in which it is either not possible to collect enough data quickly without sensors or in which dynamic measurement can be used to provide additional information regarding even an apparently static problem. The use of sensors to measure rapidly changing quantities is well known, and marked the widespread introduction of computer-based instrumentation into the curriculum decades ago. The measurement of quantities that are difficult to measure without sensors is also well documented.

This work focuses on documenting a number of creative ways in which sensors have been used to illustrate concepts to students. There is particular emphasis on ways that the sensors elucidate concepts that defy other types of teaching aids such as models and computer simulations.

Pedagogical approaches used in these curriculum materials

Too often students are given too much direction in the learning process. For best results, students must be coached, but not “directed” to the solution.1 Discovery learning is shown to have clear benefits in regard to deeper understanding and long-term retention,2 but has never gained widespread use because many fear the potential time-inefficiency of discovery learning approaches.3 Our proposed format, however, incorporates structured reflection to achieve some of discovery learning’s benefits without making a major commitment of time. The introduction of discovery methods shifts some control over the learning process to the learner. This approach agrees with Goforth4 who, in a meta-analysis of the effectiveness of learner control in tutorial computer assisted instruction, found that "it is important that the learner have some control rather than none.” If we wish our students to learn and to be creative, they must be given that opportunity—at least some assignments must be open-ended. Students must learn to think about the problem, to ask questions, and to design an experiment to test their hypothesis. This also directly addresses a number of ABET EC 2000 Criterion 3 Outcomes, with special emphasis on outcome (b), an ability to design and conduct experiments and analyze and interpret data, and outcome (i), a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning.5 Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Park, W. J. J., & Stephan, E. A., & Sill, B. L., & Ohland, M. (2004, June), Applications Of Real Time Sensors In The Freshman Engineering Classroom Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/13095

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: © 2004 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