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Face To Face, Hybrid, Or Online?: Issues Faculty Face Redesigning An Introductory Engineering Graphics Course

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Teaching Strategies in Graphics

Tagged Division

Engineering Design Graphics

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.602.1 - 13.602.12



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Paper Authors

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Theodore Branoff North Carolina State University

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Eric Wiebe North Carolina State University

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

Face-to-Face, Hybrid, or Online?: Issues Faculty Face Redesigning an Introductory Engineering Graphics Course


A hybrid introductory course was developed and piloted during the Fall 2007 semester in three laptop sections (i.e., all of the students owned and brought laptops to class each day). The online portion of the course included voiced-over content presentations, software demonstrations, and sketching examples as well as online assessments. Sections met in the classroom once each week where instructors discussed and demonstrated essential CAD and textbook content. This time was also used to answer student questions and give feedback on homework and CAD exercises. Outside of class, students were expected to view the online content, complete CAD and sketching exercises, and complete a weekly online assessment. No difference was found between final exam scores in the hybrid sections and the face-to-face sections. This paper discusses the implementation of the hybrid introductory engineering graphics course, summarizes data collected during the Fall 2007 semester pilot study, and offers some discussions about the relative advantages and disadvantages of face-to-face, hybrid, and all online delivery.


Over the last several years, faculty in the Graphic Communications program at North Carolina State University have been developing courses for blended as well as complete online delivery. The motivation for developing online content has come from several different sources. The main driving force has been the continual search for the most effective way of delivering content – whether online, face-to-face, or hybrid/blended. Other motivating factors include pressures from administration to investigate more cost efficient ways of delivering instruction, being able to teach more sections of the course with fewer faculty, and - maybe most importantly - giving students more control over how and when they learn.

Courses which are taught completely online require some different instructional strategies and resources than hybrid or blended courses. Since hybrid courses involve some face-to-face contact with students, instructors can address issues that students seem to miss when taking a completely online course. In addition, addressing commitment and engagement in the course materials takes on increased importance as direct instructor contact is reduced. When surveying students who had dropped out of a completely online Graduate Certificate Program in Community College Teaching in the College of Education at North Carolina State University, faculty discovered that approximately 13% of those students listed lack of faculty contact and lack of community building opportunities as reasons why they eventually left the program 1,2.

In this current pilot project, we were interested in exploring how a hybrid offering of our introductory engineering graphics course might constructively address instructional efficiency, learning flexibility, and student engagement concerns while still delivering an instructionally effective course. This initial exploration is part of our ongoing instructional design study looking at leveraging best-in-class technologies and instructional strategies for effective graphics instruction.

Branoff, T., & Wiebe, E. (2008, June), Face To Face, Hybrid, Or Online?: Issues Faculty Face Redesigning An Introductory Engineering Graphics Course Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3729

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