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One Step Beyond: Lecturing With A Tablet Pc

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2006 Annual Conference & Exposition


Chicago, Illinois

Publication Date

June 18, 2006

Start Date

June 18, 2006

End Date

June 21, 2006



Conference Session

Instrumentation and Laboratory Systems

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

11.973.1 - 11.973.12



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Paper Authors


Roxanne Toto Pennsylvania State University

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Roxanne Toto is an instructional designer and e-Learning Support Specialist for Engineering Instructional Services at the Pennsylvania State University. In this capacity she supports faculty, teaching assistants and staff in developing technology skills and integrating those skills into courses and provides assistance in the areas of teaching, learning, instructional technology, and assessment. She received her B.A. in American Studies from Temple University in Philadelphia, her M.S. in Instructional Design and Technology from Philadelphia University; and is currently writing her dissertation in Instructional Systems at the Pennsylvania State University. Her research interests include the design of online learning and how learning occurs in those environments.
Address: 201 Hammond Building, University Park, PA 16802. Telephone: 814-865-4017, FAX: 814-865-4021, email:

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Mark Wharton Pennsylvania State University

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Mark J. Wharton is an Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering at Penn State. He teaches undergraduate courses in Electronics (Electronics I, II, and III) and Senior Project Design, the EE capstone design course. He received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Penn State and his M.S. from the University of Colorado in Boulder. Prior to working at Penn State, Mark spent over 30 years in industry as an Electronic Design Engineer.
Address: 209J EE West, University Park, PA 16802. Telephone: 814-865-2091, email:

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John Cimbala Pennsylvania State University

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John M. Cimbala is Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Penn State University, University Park. He received his B.S. from Penn State in 1979, his M.S. from Caltech in 1980, and his Ph.D. from Caltech in 1984. He has been at Penn State since 1984, where he teaches courses in the thermal sciences and conducts research in experimental and computational fluid mechanics and heat transfer. He has received a number of teaching and advising awards, including the University's George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching. He is co-author of two books† Indoor Air Quality Engineering, Marcel-Dekker, 2003 and Fluid Mechanics: Fundamentals and Applications, McGraw-Hill, 2006.
Address: 234 Reber Building, University Park, PA 16802. Telephone: 814-863-2739, FAX: 814-863-4848, e-mail:

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John Wise Pennsylvania State University

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John C. Wise is Director of Engineering Instructional Services at Penn State. In this capacity, he provides assistance to faculty members and teaching assistants in the areas of teaching, learning, instructional technology, and assessment. He received his B.A. in Liberal Arts from The University of the State of New York and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Instructional Systems at Penn State.
Address: 201 Hammond Building, University Park, PA 16802. Telephone: 814-865-4016, FAX: 814-865-4021, email:

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

One Step Beyond: Lecturing With a Tablet PC


In the Fall 2005 semester, the authors used a Tablet PC during lectures as a replacement for the chalkboard. The Tablet PC allows the instructor to write on the PC screen while facing the students, similar to an overhead projector. The advantage is that the entire presentation can be saved in electronic format and uploaded to the course website, where it is available to both the students and instructor immediately after the session ends. Students and the instructor can focus on concept learning rather than transcription. With wireless capability the instructor would be able to walk around the room while projecting his solutions in real time. This paper reports on two specific case experiences with this tool, including student data on usability and satisfaction.


The Tablet PC is the next step in the evolution of laptop computing. Smaller, faster, more powerful technologies and better integrated software capabilities provide the impetus for this step. Equipped with a touch-sensitive screen, users can enter data directly through the use of a stylus (pen) or utilize a traditional keyboard. There are several different types of Tablet PCs, but all allow the use of digital ink to generate new documents or annotate existing documents. Included software allows professors to write and problem solve as they would using traditional pad/pencil using Journal™ or write directly on Word™ or PowerPoint™ slides, save the document or slides including the notations, and provide them to students in electronic form. This combines the ease of digital presentations with the interactivity of the overhead/chalkboard. For example, professors can work out detailed solutions on the computer screen, project the solutions in real time, and save solutions on the hard drive, all while facing the students. A brief overview of Tablet computing and its development can be seen in table 1.

The 60’s The 70’s The 80’s The 90’s Today Ivan Sutherland No significant The first GO Corp. Several develops ‘Tablet’ ‘portable’ creates 1st sole integrated Sketchpad a developments computers by pen based OS; Tablet ‘types’ pen/Tablet but Sonic Pen a Tandy appear; MS releases being offered, input 3D input device Apple debuts Windows for better technology becomes the book like pen computing; handwriting (non- available; Pong Navigator; First Apple releases recognition integrated) is created by pen based point Newton (PDA); softwares; Atari; Xerox select system handwriting better designed begins work on by GRiD an recognition and integrated GUI, and Apple IBM PC improves w/ softwares for incorporates compatible PC ‘Graffiti’; Tablet use Tablet arguably first begin catching convertible on Tablet PC appears Table 1. Evolution of Tablet PC Technology1, 2, 3

Toto, R., & Wharton, M., & Cimbala, J., & Wise, J. (2006, June), One Step Beyond: Lecturing With A Tablet Pc Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. 10.18260/1-2--914

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