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Designing, Developing, And Implementing An Online Engineering Thermodynamics Course Using Web Technology

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.349.1 - 6.349.13



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Paper Authors

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Gary Fetter

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M.P. Sharma

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

Session 1520

Designing, Developing, and Implementing an Online Engineering Thermodynamics Course Using Web Technology

M.P. Sharma, Ph.D., Gary M. Fetter University of Wyoming


While there has been extraordinary growth in development and delivery of accredited online degree programs and courses in many disciplines, the engineering field continues to lag behind and accredited online engineering degree programs continue to be virtually unavailable. In engineering education, the more prevalent trend is that of instructors and educators using Web technology for supplementing and enhancing traditional classroom teaching. The reason for the slow rate of growth in using this new technology for teaching entirely online courses in engineering is not apparent. In Wyoming, there is even a greater need for online delivery of basic engineering courses so that transfer students, most of who live in distant and remote areas, and other prospective students can prepare themselves prior to arriving on campus. In Spring 2000, with the sponsorship of the Engineering College and the School of Extended Studies, the lead author proposed and initiated a project to design, develop, and deliver a complete online course in Engineering Thermodynamics that would satisfy the University of Wyoming’s requirement for the accredited degree in engineering. The authors, then, did research on developing a suitable pedagogical approach for effective teaching and learning using Web and online delivery technologies, particularly focused on the special nature, nuances, challenges, and needs related to the subject of thermodynamics. It is the first course ever to be offered fully online by the Engineering College at the University of Wyoming (to our knowledge, this also may be the first university accredited fully-online thermodynamics course offered on the Web that satisfies undergraduate engineering degree requirements).

Online teaching and learning offers many benefits and opportunities to learners and educators; however, it also offers new challenges and unique considerations for developers, educators, and learners. This paper presents and addresses many of the pedagogical, technical, attitudinal, and environmental challenges encountered by the educators in the process of developing, designing, and implementing an engineering course for online delivery at the University of Wyoming.


With the advent of Web and Internet technology, engineering education is entering a new and challenging age. One of our biggest challenges is integrating online technology and assessing the outcome of our engineering curriculum. As most of us know, the Internet/World Wide Web (WWW) is a powerful tool, which provides unprecedented opportunities to expand and enhance teaching/learning resources and environments. The information created is accessible on demand anytime, anywhere. Recent advances in technologies for building and using knowledge bases and for creating and developing Multimedia rich information have made teaching complete Web- based courses a reality. Increasing growth of Web-based educational materials clearly points to

Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Fetter, G., & Sharma, M. (2001, June), Designing, Developing, And Implementing An Online Engineering Thermodynamics Course Using Web Technology Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico. 10.18260/1-2--9099

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