June 22, 2008
June 22, 2008
June 25, 2008
13.322.1 - 13.322.13
Computer-Controlled Instrumentation Projects by Sophomore-Level EET Students
Abstract This paper presents student-initiated projects as part of an instrumentation and data acquisition course for sophomore-level electronics engineering technology students. Project objectives and associated assessment methodologies as well as general project management concepts are discussed. Two sample instrumentation projects reported in this paper are an automated street parking system and a computer-controlled bowling game system. Both projects focused on instrumentation system development integrating multiple sensors and actuators, data acquisition hardware, interface electronics, control logic implementation in LabVIEW software, and wood/metal work for prototype development. These end-of-semester course projects were carried out during the final four weeks of the semester after eleven weeks of lecture/laboratory session.
Introduction The ability to conduct and design experiments is rated as one of the most desirable technical skills of engineering and engineering technology graduates1. Specifically, the referenced survey indicates that employers want graduates with a working knowledge of data acquisition, analysis and interpretation; and an ability to formulate a range of alternative problem solutions. Additionally, potential employers of our EET graduates are in the automated manufacturing and testing sector of the industry providing additional motivation for an instrumentation and data acquisition course2 at the sophomore level of a four-year EET program. This course consists of two hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory per week. Students have had courses in electrical circuit analysis, electrical machines, and analog and digital electronics before taking this course. The first three weeks of the fifteen-week semester are devoted primarily to LabVIEW programming. During the next eight weeks, the concepts and integration of sensors and actuators, interface electronics, and data acquisition and instrument control hardware /software are covered. The final four weeks are dedicated to student-initiated laboratory design projects3-6. This paper focuses on general approach to implementing end-of-semester course projects and associated assessment tools used to assess the project objectives. Technical details of two sample instrumentation projects, an automated street parking system and a computerized bowling game system, implemented during the spring-2007 semester are also presented.
Course project objectives and the associated assessment method The learning and teaching objectives for the project experience are listed in the next page. A list of questions was prepared based on the stated objectives, and the survey was conducted at the end of second and fourth week of the four-week project experience as an indirect assessment tool. The results of the first survey was used to improve the project experience during the second half, and the results of the second survey is to be used to improve the next offering of the instrumentation project experience in spring-2008. Students are also assessed using direct assessment tools for teamwork, oral presentation, final report, successful operation and demonstration of the completed project, and design review meetings. Example rubrics used to assess teamwork and oral presentation are shown in Appendices A and B, respectively. Results of direct and indirect assessment instruments are archived for use as an input to the course
Dutko, M., & Auburger, C., & Anderson, P., & Ray, B. (2008, June), Computer Controlled Instrumentation Projects By Sophomore Level Eet Students Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/3460
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