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Automated Homework In Electrical Engineering Technology

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.102.1 - 4.102.12

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Paper Authors

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Timothy A. Paull

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J. Michael Jacob

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Robert J. Herrick

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

Session 3220

Automated Homework in Electrical Engineering Technology Timothy A. Paull, J. Michael Jacob, McNelly Distinguished Professor of Technology, Robert J. Herrick, Hoffer Distinguished Professor of Technology Purdue University


The purpose of this study is to analyze the effectiveness an Asynchronous Learning Network (ALN) approach to homework has on student performance by providing immediate feedback. Providing immediate feedback is an important part of reinforcing desirable behavior3. This project replaced the manual homework in the first semester Electrical Engineering Technology circuits course with problems generated, administered, checked, and immediately graded over the World Wide Web. The results were displayed on the student’s screen allowing drill and mastery learning in a non- judgmental mode.

There is an increasing amount of research directed at the affects of interactive web-based learning. The ALN teaching method provides the students with access to the assignments at any time. This allows students to work at their own pace, on their own time, and to receive instant feedback about their understanding of the subject matter. This study assesses the effects of students' overall performance, when using an interactive homework web site as compared with traditional manually performed and manually graded homework.

I. General Background

All students entering Electrical Engineering Technology at West Lafayette and each of the five Purdue State Wide Technology locations take EET 107, Introduction to Circuit Analysis, the first semester. It lays the technical and instructional foundation for a tightly integrated series of six courses, involving at least twelve faculty across the state. It establishes the foundation of information and expectations upon which all remaining courses rely. Students must finish with a high level of knowledge, good work habits, self- confidence and an excitement for the material. Failure often means that the student decides to leave both the department and the university. For these reasons it is paramount that every effort be made to make the students successful, day-by-day.

II. The Instructional Problem

Traditional methods of assigning and completing homework do not provide immediate feedback to the students. Complete and rapid feedback is critical for students new to college, approaching a highly computational subject that is considerably different from material studied in high school. Immediate feedback allows instant correction of mistakes and it reinforces the correct techniques that the student is using, building success upon

Paull, T. A., & Jacob, J. M., & Herrick, R. J. (1999, June), Automated Homework In Electrical Engineering Technology Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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