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Pedagogy And Technology In Statics

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

ASEE Multimedia Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.919.1 - 8.919.10



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Paper Authors

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Nelson Baker

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Session 2793

Pedagogy and Technology in Statics

Sean W. St.Clair, Nelson C. Baker

Georgia Institute of Technology


This paper will discuss ten different Statics instructional technology programs that were considered for classroom use and the positive aspects of each as well as some of their shortcomings.

While in the process of a larger research project investigating the effects of technology use in the classroom, a number of different readily available instructional programs designed for use in Statics courses were studied. The programs were being considered for use in some sections of Statics being taught at Georgia Tech to assist students with the truss analysis portion of the course. Current and former teachers of the course were surveyed to see what type of characteristics they sought in an instructional program for trusses. Ten popular and readily available software titles were then obtained from developers, textbooks, and bookstores. The titles were then evaluated to determine the extent to which they matched the desired pedagogical characteristics outlined by the instructors and supported by learning theory. The findings revealed that while all of the programs did meet some of the evaluation criteria, no one title fulfilled all of the instructors’ needs. This paper will describe desirable software features based upon pedagogical theory and present the list of software characteristics requested by faculty members. In addition, the functionality of each of the pieces of software is discussed and the program that was chosen for the aforementioned larger research project is identified as well as the reasons why it was chosen.


An ongoing research project investigating the long-term effects of technology use in the classroom is being conducted at Georgia Tech. A portion of this project involved selecting software to use in the classroom in order to study the effects of its use. The course in which the technology was implemented was Statics; a course with which many engineering students and instructors are very familiar. Furthermore, this technological intervention involved just one portion of the course, the truss analysis topic. A number of readily available pieces of software exist for use in assisting with the instruction of truss analysis and so a method by which to decide which title to use in order to best serve the students was employed. This method involved comparing the software programs to established theories of learning as well as assuring that the programs contained characteristics deemed to be desirable by the instructors of the course. A

Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Baker, N. (2003, June), Pedagogy And Technology In Statics Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--11750

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2003 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015