St. Louis, Missouri
June 18, 2000
June 18, 2000
June 21, 2000
5.440.1 - 5.440.14
Mastery Learning with the MATLAB Webserver Roger A. Green North Dakota State University
Mastery learning, as introduced in the 1960’s and 1970’s, includes three distinguishing features: (1) the use of proctors, which allows tutoring, repeated testing, and immediate feedback; (2) the unit-perfection requirement, which requires students to document subject mastery before advancing to new material; and (3) the self-paced feature1. Significant resource demands, particularly for proctors, has discouraged the widespread use of traditional mastery learning methods. New technologies and software, however, permit the practical implementation of mastery learning models. Motivated by the ubiquity of MATLAB in most engineering disciplines, this paper develops a general framework for using the MATLAB Webserver to accomplish mastery learning in engineering courses. Essentially, the MATLAB Webserver serves as a replacement for human proctors. With minimal programming, instructors can effectively harness MATLAB’s web interface and delivery tools to promote mastery learning and improve student education.
To help illustrate mastery learning with the MATLAB Webserver, this paper details a pilot study involving electrical engineering students enrolled in a junior-level signals and systems course at North Dakota State University. Students access material through HTML documents and forms using standard web-browser technology. The advantage of web delivery is 24-hour system access. Dynamic information exchange occurs between the client and server machines through the Matweb CGI interface. Developed features include individualized student assignments, instantaneous feedback, mastery through assignment resubmission, and automated grading. Statistical analysis, student comments, and instructor perspectives document the effectiveness and limitations of the approach. Initial student response has been positive.
Ever since reading Keller’s article “Good-Bye, Teacher…” I have been intrigued with the idea of mastery learning. Mastery learning has three fundamental components1: § The use of proctors, which allows tutoring, repeated testing, and immediate feedback. § The unit-perfection requirement, which requires students to document subject mastery before advancing to new material. § The self-paced feature, which allows students to proceed through the material at their own pace. Mastery learning is quite flexible, but significant resource demands, particularly for proctors, has discouraged the widespread use of traditional mastery learning methods. Mastery learning is difficult to implement, and it deviates significantly from the traditional approach of lecture, homework, and examination.
Green, R. (2000, June), Mastery Learning With The Matlab Webserver Paper presented at 2000 Annual Conference, St. Louis, Missouri. https://peer.asee.org/8551
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