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Delivery of Hands-on Technical Courses through Real-Time Distance Learning

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

Distance Learning in Engineering Technology

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.358.1 - 24.358.9



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Paper Authors


Steve C. Hsiung Old Dominion University

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Steve Hsiung is an associate professor of electrical engineering technology at Old Dominion University. Prior to his current position, Dr. Hsiung had worked for Maxim Integrated Products, Inc., Seagate Technology, Inc., and Lam Research Corp., all in Silicon Valley, CA. Dr. Hsiung also taught at Utah State University and California University of Pennsylvania. He earned his BS degree from National Kauhsiung Normal University in 1980, MS degrees from University of North Dakota in 1986 and Kansas State University in 1988, and PhD degree from Iowa State University in 1992. Steve can be reached at

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John M. Ritz Old Dominion University

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John M. Ritz is professor of STEM Education and Professional Studies at Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia. He conducts educational research in technology and engineering subjects.

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Ece Yaprak Wayne State University

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Dr. Ece Yaprak is a Professor of Engineering Technology in the College of Engineering at Wayne State University. Her areas of interest include computer networks and communications where she has published extensively. She has held engineering positions at General Electric and Ford Motor Company, and research fellowships at NASA (John Glenn, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Ames Research Center, and the Johnson Space Center) and the U.S. Navy (SPAWAR). She held a Fulbright fellowship at the Center for Wireless Communications (CWC) at the University of Oulu in Finland. She has received teaching excellence awards from her Division and the College of Engineering. She has received funding for her research from the NSF, the US Navy, NASA, and the business community. She is an ABET IEEE ETAC Commissioner and an active program evaluator.

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Feng Jao Ohio Northern University

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Delivery of Hands-on Technical Courses through Real-Time Distance LearningAbstractIt is generally believed that it is too challenging to deliver technical courses using distancelearning technologies. The focus of this paper will be to discuss strategies that may be used toaddress these challenges. A research team composed of faculty from five universities andcommunity colleges explored what might be needed to make this type of technical laboratoryinstruction possible. The team explored delivering a microcontroller embedded systems designcontent through audio-visual distance learning technologies. The team’s research anddevelopment activities will be discussed. This will included focus on the technical trainingequipment that had to be designed and its supporting electronic curriculum and laboratorymodules, instructional support videos, and the design of an electronic server system.The technologies developed and used by these researchers were supported by a three-year proof-of-concept National Science Foundation project. The initial year’s work explored the needs fordeveloping such a training system. A technical trainer was developed through an earlier researchproject and initial instructional modules were written. Through this project, the instructionalsupport system was refined and additional learning modules and a set of laboratory moduleswere completed. In year two of the current project, the system was tested through three summerworkshops taught to 60 faculty members throughout the U.S. The summer workshops provedthat technical laboratory content and courses can be taught via real-time video conferencinginstruction.Using data collected from the faculty who participated in the summer workshops, the trainingplatform and teaching modules are being refined. Results will be reported including focus on thefollowing topics:• Design and development of the technical training system platform and supporting instructional materials.• Preparation of the virtual classrooms and supporting computer servers.• Implementation strategies and planning for the on-line, real-time, audio-visual delivery.• Assessment of the training and learning experiences.• Establishment of an academic knowledge community.• Pros and Cons of the technical hands-on real-time distance learning curriculum.• Recommendations for adoption of on-line technical content learning.Overall this project was undertaken to test a training idea for distance instruction and toencourage other faculty to implement embedded microcontroller technologies into theirengineering and engineering technology curriculum.Topic Areas: 1. Distance Learning in Engineering 2. Embedded System Designs for Engineering and Technology Courses 3. Establishment of a Collaborative Knowledge Community in Engineering and Technology Teachers

Hsiung, S. C., & Ritz, J. M., & Yaprak, E., & Jao, F. (2014, June), Delivery of Hands-on Technical Courses through Real-Time Distance Learning Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--20249

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