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Engineering 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

6.442.1 - 6.442.8

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Ahmad Ibrahim

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

Session 2247

Economical Integration of Virtual Laboratories in EET Curricula

A. M. Ibrahim DeVry Institute of Technology Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Virtual Laboratories provide interactive environment for creating and conducting simulated experiments. Integrating virtual labs into an EET curriculum has the potential of enhancing classroom delivery by establishing a timely connection between theory and practice. Virtual labs can also help institutions to cope with budget constraints without sacrificing quality. Nevertheless, developing such labs requires not only specialized expertise, but also initial and maintenance capitals, situations that can hinder their use. The objective of this work is to provide a solution by showing, through examples, the possibility of integrating virtual laboratories available for free on the Web into the EET curriculum. The examples provided cover topics typical to courses such as Mathematics, Physics, Electronic Devices and Circuits, Digital Signal Processing, and Control Systems. The objective of the labs include design, analysis and illustration of concepts. Such an approach leads to achieving the educational objectives at a reduced cost with a minimum investment of time on the part of instructors. Although the concept is illustrated using a specific curriculum as an example, it can be implemented in other ET disciplines.

I. Introduction

The use of the Internet for classroom and distance education has received increasing attention over the past few years 1,2. Of particular interest for engineering and technology education is the use of the Internet for the delivery of virtual laboratories 3-9. Virtual laboratories have numerous merits that they share with classical laboratories and can achieve similar objectives, such as establishing links between theory and practice and helping students visualize concepts, but at a reduced cost. The objective here is to suggest that the cost of integrating virtual laboratories can be further reduced by using the global nature of the Internet; not using it only to deliver material to one’s own students. Educators who choose to use them can do so economically, i.e. with no added infrastructure or extra funding.

Numerous educators from various institutions around the world have invested time in

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

Ibrahim, A. (2001, June), Engineering Technology Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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