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Converting Face To Face Classes To Web Based On Line College Classes

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Concluding Thoughts in Engineering Education

Tagged Division

Industrial Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.369.1 - 14.369.7



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Paper Authors

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Harry Petersen Minnesota State University, Mankato


William Peterson Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Dr. Bill Peterson is currently an associate professor and chair of the Automotive and Manufacturing Engineering Technology Department at Minnesota State University, Mankato. He holds a BIE from Auburn University. He spent twenty years in industry prior during which time he earned an MBA and managed engineering, manufacturing, and plants in a wide variety of industries. He has spent the last 16 teaching industrial and manufacturing engineering, engineering management, and the management of technology. He is current program chair of the IE Division of ASEE and a director in two other divisions. He is past president of SEMS and ASEM.

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

Converting Face-to-Face Classes to Web-Based On-Line College Classes


Due to the increasing interest in web-based college courses, some engineering and engineering technology departments are exploring the idea of converting traditional face-to-face college classes into on-line courses. The Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program at Minnesota State University, Mankato MN, has put most of our Industrial Engineering-based senior-level courses on-line via the web over the past few years, converting these classes from traditional face-to-face campus lectures and laboratories.

We have learned quite a bit in the process. Web-based, on-line classes provide advantages for students who are remote or have schedule problems, but there are a number of factors and costs, often hidden, which also must be considered when converting traditional classes to on-line classes. This paper will present case-study examples of class conversions of two Industrial Engineering-based classes (Logistics, and Industrial Safety) which are taught as part of the Manufacturing Engineering Technology program. We will discuss preliminary evaluations of results, and will present a few of the advantages, costs, and problems involved with teaching these on-line courses. We will also discuss the experiences of a newly-hired faculty member who is teaching an already-converted on-line Industrial Engineering-based class for the first time. This paper will be valuable for programs considering developing on-line classes, especially in the areas of Industrial Engineering and Manufacturing.

Advantages Why the Classes were Offered On-Line

With the growth of the internet and supporting programs, many institutions of higher learning are examining the possibility of offering at least some classes over the internet. While correspondence courses by mail have been offered for many decades, the immediate response and information bandwidth of the internet offer the possibility of real-time remote interaction, electronic homework and exams, and instant streaming video and audio not available by mail. With proper support, web-based instruction computer programs such as Desire2Learn (D2L) 1, a commercial classroom management system (similar to Blackboard, etc.), allows remote students to password-access materials on their own schedule while requiring online discussions at , web-based, on-line college classes offer the opportunity to teach classes to a much wider audience of students with schedule flexibility. But nothing is perfect.

Manufacturing Engineering Technology program culminates with our students completing a two-semester Senior Design Project, often at out-of- town manufacturing facilities. These students must travel between the sponsoring company and our campus almost daily in order to do their design project while also taking face-to-face classes here. In addition, we are working with remote community college partners to develop articulation agreements to allow students to take the first two years at a local community college, and then transfer to our university to complete their four-

Petersen, H., & Peterson, W. (2009, June), Converting Face To Face Classes To Web Based On Line College Classes Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5079

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: © 2009 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