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Internet Ready Instruction Modules In Engineering Education

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2000 Annual Conference


St. Louis, Missouri

Publication Date

June 18, 2000

Start Date

June 18, 2000

End Date

June 21, 2000



Page Count


Page Numbers

5.399.1 - 5.399.3



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Paper Authors

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R. Sureshkumar

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J. Sato

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

Session 1608

Internet-Ready Instruction Modules in Engineering Education R. Sureshkumar, J. Sato Washington University, St. Louis, MO 63130.


The primary objective of Internet-Ready Instruction Modules (IRIMs) is to utilize the global accessibility of the Internet to aid and enhance traditional classroom instruction. Recent advances in Internet technology offer a myriad of possibilities for IRIMs. In this paper, we outline how IRIMs can be used to promote multidisciplinary learning, to illustrate difficult concepts through audio-visual aids, for the development of virtual/real experiments that can be conducted via the Internet and to integrate faculty research into undergraduate/graduate education.

I. Introduction

Engineering education must keep in pace with progress in science and technology in order to help engineers fulfill societal demands and expectations. Therefore, educational and professional goals have to be redefined and adapted from time to time to accommodate the changes in these variables. The national focus on higher education [1], as we approach the new millennium, offers educators an opportunity to rethink educational objectives and to modify traditional tools and create new ones.

Computers and the Internet have influenced engineering practice significantly. Use of Information Technology (IT) in information/data management, communication, advertising, commerce and trade has created a global market place in which “the traditional engineer” should redefine her vital role. In addition, many of the emerging technologies require engineers to function efficiently in multidisciplinary environments and team projects. IT offers great potential for the development of new education tools that transcend the limitations of traditional classroom instruction. The vision behind the IRIMs project is to use advances in IT to develop a “global” learning culture that promotes education through multidisciplinary, team-oriented, computer aided learning. Principal elements of our present efforts are outlined below.

2. IRIMs in Education and Outreach

Use of animations and movies to aid assimilation of difficult concepts: Classical movies, such as the ones by G.I. Taylor and S. Corrsin, can be reformatted and placed as computer resources that can be accessed through the Internet. A number of efforts, supported by National Science Foundation, has recently resulted in the generation of multi-media modules in areas such as fluid mechanics and process technology [2-3].

Incorporation of virtual and real experiments that can be performed through the Internet: Virtual experiments are possible with today’s technology. For instance, consider the illustration of self- diffusion through random walk through IRIM. A computer program to simulate random walk will be linked to the IRIM. The student can “click” on the appropriate icon to run this program with the parameters she specifies and see the results in real time. Physical limitations exists for real

Sureshkumar, R., & Sato, J. (2000, June), Internet Ready Instruction Modules In Engineering Education Paper presented at 2000 Annual Conference, St. Louis, Missouri. 10.18260/1-2--8866

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