Asee peer logo

Developing A Multi Author Web Site To Support Large Acl Engineering Classes

Download Paper |


2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Web Education: Delivery and Evaluation

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.393.1 - 8.393.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Jefferey Froyd

author page

Don Maxwell

author page

Debra Fowler

author page

Jim Morgan

Download Paper |

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

Session 3220

Developing A Multi-Author Web Site to Support Large ACL Engineering Classes

Donald A. Maxwell, James R. Morgan, Debra Fowler

Texas A&M University


Instructors increasingly post course information and interact with their students via the Web. However, time to construct and revise a course web site that relies entirely on static HTML coding can be considerable. This paper describes a web application, CENotes, which was designed and implemented around three concepts: • It must organize material around students needs as expressed by student surveys. • It must add value to the existing situation and not just rehash existing material. • It must reduce the HTML maintenance effort as much as possible. Originally designed for two first-year engineering courses and a junior/senior civil engineering course, the application has grown into a multi-course/instructor Web site, serving some 750 students in 15 graduate and undergraduate classes. It has the following capabilities: • Instructors are able to incorporate a large volume of evolving material in various formats into the application on a daily basis with no HTML maintenance. • Students are able to browse and retrieve the material organized by: topic, by function, or by schedule according to their needs. Student surveys indicate that they want the material organized according to their learning styles, background, and personal desires. • Students are able to retrieve individual grade reports enabling quick feed back on daily work and exam scores. • Instructors, teaching assistants, and peer teachers are able to communicate with each other and the students through moderated email, notice boards, etc. This paper will present development strategies, based upon input from student surveys, used to enhance the application.

In The Beginning CENotes evolved from an over-elaborate Web site that consisted of at least 50 pages coded entirely in HTML. Prior to the summer 2001, the site supported two large classes, CVEN 349 - Construction Project Management (around 100 junior level students) and ENGR111/112 Foundations of Engineering I and II (about 92 freshmen students). The intent was to provide links to lecture notes and other handouts following a 16-week layout for each class. A log-on system was developed in order to restrict access to the notes to enrolled students and a few guests.

Since the site was entirely coded in static HTML, the site had to be recoded every semester as schedule and materials changed. Site maintenance was a major headache. In fact as much time was spent on HTML changes as in editing existing course material. Fortunately, the course

Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Froyd, J., & Maxwell, D., & Fowler, D., & Morgan, J. (2003, June), Developing A Multi Author Web Site To Support Large Acl Engineering Classes Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12425

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: © 2003 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