June 22, 2008
June 22, 2008
June 25, 2008
13.423.1 - 13.423.9
Development of an On-line Introduction to Nanotechnology Course: Issues and Challenges
The emerging field of Nanotechnology is leading to a technological revolution in the new millennium. Realizing the need for providing nanotechnology education and training at the undergraduate level to technicians and technologists, Excelsior College, a well respected distance learning institution in higher education has recently embarked upon a plan to develop and implement an on-line 4-year nanotechnology degree program. Since the Excelsior learning model permits offering a course of study with a significant amount of the coursework and other requirements met by external courses and workforce experience, hence the on-line instruction elements will be phased in gradually. Initially, two on-line nanotechnology core courses will be developed. The first one, titled “Introduction to Nanotechnology” is currently under development. The second one, titled “Basic Nanofabrication Process” will be developed during Summer 2008.
This manuscript describes the development of on-line nanotechnology courses at Excelsior College. The manuscript discusses several issues to be dealt with during the development of the above mentioned introductory on-line/web-based nanotechnology courses and provides details regarding the course development strategy Excelsior College will be using to address the above mentioned issues. The manuscript also describes the innovative course development model used by Excelsior College. This course model combines virtual reality, graphics, text, and sound. The model features a multidisciplinary perspective and is designed specifically for the needs of working adults.
Nanotechnology is the creation of functional materials, devices, and systems through control of matter on the nanometer length scale and the exploitation of novel properties and phenomena developed at that scale. Nanotechnology holds singular promise to revolutionize science, engineering, and technology. It already has significant impact in countless industries including communications, medicine, environmental cleanup, agriculture, and more. Innovative materials, components, and systems based on nanotechnologies are recognized as promising growth innovators for the years to come. It is expected that eventually nanotechnologies will merge into a technology cluster offering a complete range of functionalities in information, energy, construction, environmental, and biomedical domains. The extensive use of nanotechnology will create a significant demand for workers who can provide technical assistance in the development of products and processes using nanotechnology concepts.
As estimated by the National Science Foundation (NSF), two million technical workers will be needed to support nanotechnology industries worldwide within the next 15 years
Anwar, S., & Dhillon, H. (2008, June), Development Of An On Line Introduction To Nanotechnology Course: Issues And Challenges Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/3915
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