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Substitution of Lectures in Applied Statics Course with “Open Learning Initiative” Web Resources

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

Distance Learning in Engineering Technology

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.1139.1 - 24.1139.8



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Paper Authors


Brian A. Alenskis Purdue University, Richmond, Ind.

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Professor Alenskis is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering Technology for Purdue University in Richmond, IN. He received both his Bachelor of Science and his Master of Engineering degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy NY. He has extensive industry experience in the areas of machine design, process development, fiber-reinforced polymers and engineering management.

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Substitution of Statics Lectures With “Open Learning Initiative” Web ResourcesThe lecture component of an engineering technology statics course was largely replaced bystudent use of the Open Learning Initiative (OLI) online resources. Carnegie Mellon Universityhosts the grant-funded website. The OLI statics resources have been available since 2008 andincreasingly used for textbook substitution and lecture supplements, but infrequently for lecturesubstitution. The statics course on the OLI website provides free public/student access tointeractive content modules and provides registered faculty with a real-time “dashboard”showing student participation and performance, for timely responding to student learning needs.Statics is usually a curriculum’s first engineering mechanics course and considered challengingby most students. The hybrid statics course described in this paper utilized OLI for the first time,to provide lecture content for all but two course topics. This freshman course sought to eliminateclass lectures, yet retained weekly classroom problem-solving, recitation sessions, for acomponent of faculty-student interaction and for addressing student feedback from OLI. Thiswas typically the students’ first post-secondary, online, academic experience. The studentsadapted well, and although the initial enrollment was small, the course test scores werecomparable to those of the previous, traditional lecture delivery.The Open Learning Initiative provides faculty at all institutions with very economical and well-designed resources for enhancing conventional courses, for “flipping” existing courses, and forconversion to hybrid formats. This particular statics initiative provided both experience adaptingcourse content delivery to entirely OLI delivery and an intermediate point for potentiallylaunching an entirely online statics course using Open Learning Initiative resources.

Alenskis, B. A. (2014, June), Substitution of Lectures in Applied Statics Course with “Open Learning Initiative” Web Resources Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--23072

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