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Looking into Future: Online Engineering Education

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Distance Learning and Online Teaching Session

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.877.1 - 23.877.13



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Paper Authors


Shekar Viswanathan National University

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Dr. Viswanathan is professor and chair of the department of applied engineering, National University. He has a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering and M.B.A. in general management. He is a licensed professional engineer.

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Mudasser Fraz Wyne National University

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Dr. Wyne earned a Ph.D. in Computer Science from University of Birmingham U.K., a M.Sc. in Engineering, and a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering. He has been in academics for 24 years and currently serving as a Professor of Computer Science and Chair department of Computer Science, Information and Media Systems at School of Engineering, Technology, and Media, National University, San Diego, USA. He is also the program lead for B.S. in Information Systems program. He is serving as a commissioner for Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) of the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology (ABET). He has been with ABET for more than eleven years. He has served as a program evaluator for the Computer Science Program and Information Systems Program. In addition, he is a guest editor for a journal, associate editor and serving on editorial boards for seven international journals. Dr. Wyne has served as chair and co-chair of numerous conferences, workshops, tracks and panels, in addition to serving on the program committee for around 100 international conferences. He has also given invited talks on numerous occasions and published number of articles in peer reviewed international journals and peer reviewed international conferences.

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Looking into Future: Online Engineering Education AbstractThe emergence of online education and fast growing trend of using eLearning environment hasbeen of great interest to academicians. The use of same approach and delivery mechanism inengineering disciplines is of great interest to us. In an effort to overcome issues like lowenrollment many academic institutes are now responding to this growing need of online degreeprograms. This latest trend has led to significant structural changes worldwide in Engineeringeducation. However, issues such as quality, effectiveness, and online laboratory experimentshave been and are still of some concerns and under discussion. The rapidly changingtechnological landscape has forced educators to devise, implement and evaluate innovativepedagogical approaches without compromising the traditional skills. In this effort remotelyaccessible experimental setups are being developed and implemented. Tools such as podcasting,synchronous sessions and threaded discussions are used to further enhance students’ learningexperience of online education as well as provide traditional enhanced flexibility of takingcourses anytime and independent of geographical boundaries.Founded in 1971, National University (NU) is an independent, nonprofit institution of highereducation. Since its establishment, the university has dedicated itself to providing educationalopportunities to a diverse population of working, adult learners. The School of Engineering,Technology and Media (SETM) at National University (NU) was established in July 2002, andhas attracted a current student body of over 1300 whose profile generally mirrors that of theUniversity itself. NU, the second largest private non-profit university in California, has over23,000 mainly non-traditional students: students with average age over 30 and heavily weightedwith students from traditionally underrepresented groups, including women and minorities. Moststudents, whether at the undergraduate or graduate level, are reentering an academic environmentafter having been out in the working world for some time. SETM offers nine undergraduate andeight graduate degree programs with several specializations. Over 90% of these programs areoffered both online and on-ground modes. SETM has over 10 years of experience in onlineeducation.This paper summarizes the step-by-step approach adopted by SETM from the design,development and implementation as well as assessment of our online engineering degreeprograms. Several features used such as, online laboratories, tablets with inking technology,serious game development, synchronous discussion sessions, and podcasting make our onlineprograms very unique. In addition, this paper also presents the advantages and shortcomings ofthe use of these features.

Viswanathan, S., & Wyne, M. F. (2013, June), Looking into Future: Online Engineering Education Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--22262

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