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Integration Of On Campus And Distance Students Into Teams

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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

6.632.1 - 6.632.6

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Hal Nystrom

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

Session 2542

Integration of On-Campus and Distance Students into Teams

Halvard E. Nystrom University of Missouri-Rolla


As distance education tools and programs expand, more engineering educators are faced with the challenge of integrating on-campus and distance students within the same class. To help educators understand one of their options this paper presents the experiential results of one approach that grouped the students into integrated teams. Based on the behavior of the students and results of two surveys, it identifies the strengths and weaknesses of this approach. These surveys also capture the student’s observations and preferences regarding team structure.


In the Fall Semester of 2000, the author had the opportunity to teach Advanced Financial Management, an Engineering Management class, in which half of the students were on- campus and half were distance students. There were fourteen graduate students that took this class in the traditional, on-campus, mode. They were all international students with limited industry experience. In addition there were fourteen distance students who were working engineers and used a variety of communication technologies to participate in the class. Seven utilized an audio-visual network that allowed them to see and hear the class, as well as be seen and heard by the other students. Four captured the streaming video signal through the web and participated in a telephone conference call during each of the classes. The other three received videotapes of the classes with a delay of approximately one week. In this class each team was responsible to prepare one current event presentation, and a final project that required financial analysis based on real-world information that was obtained and analyzed by the team. The projects were relatively unstructured since the team had a significant freedom to choose the topic, the scope, the methods, the form of analysis and the presentation form. This added difficulty to the project since they needed to reach consensus about these decisions, without face-to-face meetings.

Because of the maturity of the graduate students and the balance between on-campus and distance students, this course provided an excellent opportunity to study the integration of these students into teams. The students formed their own teams, but each team was required to consist of approximately half from each of the two student groups. As a result, six teams were formed. Two of them had four members, and the other four had five members each.

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

Nystrom, H. (2001, June), Integration Of On Campus And Distance Students Into Teams Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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