Asee peer logo

Development Of A Cd Rom On Thin Film Technologies: Usability Assessment And Evaluation From A Student Perspective

Download Paper |


1996 Annual Conference


Washington, District of Columbia

Publication Date

June 23, 1996

Start Date

June 23, 1996

End Date

June 26, 1996



Page Count


Page Numbers

1.153.1 - 1.153.8



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

S.v. Babu

author page

S.M. Ross

author page

I.I. Suni

author page

D.H. Rasmussen

Download Paper |

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

Session 1626


I.I. Suni, S.M. Ross*, D.H. Rasmussen, and S.V. Babu Departments of Chemical Engineering and *Technical Communications, Center for Advanced Materials Processing, Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY 13699


Our original proposal to the National Science Foundation (NSF) envisaged "the presentation, evaluation and dissemination of the themes" underlying thin film technologies "utilizing menu-driven, easily accessible, self-contained, interactive learning modules delivered in a CD-ROM format." Our expectation was that since the current generation of high school students will be exposed to multimedia technologies before entering college, CD-ROMs are ideally suited for future learning tasks and guided explorations." Our preliminary survey results from an unbiased sample of 45 undergraduate students who assessed the currently available CD-ROM version strongly validate the utility and benefits of our pedagogical approach to this highly technical and challenging material.

A paper presented by us at last year's NSF's panel at the ASEE annual meeting in Anaheim highlighted the essential features of our multimedia approach to the creation of the learning modules. Briefly, the modules consist of hypertext-connected, nested and multilayered templates comprised of appropriate text, graphics -both animation and video- and audio segments, with global searching and help and note taking capabilities. Press of a mouse button on `Hot Words' allowed access to the underlying multilayered, hidden hypertext text and graphics, facilitating a more detailed investigation of the topics on command by the user. This approach permits the student, the user, to explore the CD-ROM topics in any desired nonlinear fashion without loss of continuity. Appropriate icons available on the screen guide navigation across the pages.

Asymmetrix Corporation's Toolbook has been chosen as the authoring package. In spite of some limitations, it proved to be a viable and functional choice for this project. Toolbook allows the integration of animations, movies, hypertext, hyperlinks, graphics, notepads, problem solvers, etc. with relative ease. Currently, along with the PIs, four undergraduate and two graduate students combine their expertise in programming Windows, Toolbook, AutoCad, 3-D studio, Real 3d, 3DF/X, Visual Basic, Visual C++, Fortran and Digital Video Producer to integrate the multimedia project tasks into a package.

This paper describes further developments in the creation of the multimedia CD-ROM as well as the preliminary results of assessment of its usability by a group of sophomore undergraduate engineering students at Clarkson University. Understanding thin film technologies requires a fundamental knowledge of several aspects of materials science, thermodynamics and kinetics of deposition processes, and the chemistry and physics of the

1996 ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings

Babu, S., & Ross, S., & Suni, I., & Rasmussen, D. (1996, June), Development Of A Cd Rom On Thin Film Technologies: Usability Assessment And Evaluation From A Student Perspective Paper presented at 1996 Annual Conference, Washington, District of Columbia. 10.18260/1-2--5979

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: © 1996 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