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Supplemental Multimedia Online Learning Tool (SMOLT) in Engineering Education

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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

Multidisciplinary Experiential Learning

Tagged Division

Multidisciplinary Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.1142.1 - 24.1142.12



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Paper Authors


Lulu Sun Embry-Riddle Aeronautical Univ., Daytona Beach

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Lulu Sun is an associate professor in the Department of Freshman Engineering at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, where she has taught since 2006. She received her B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Harbin Engineering University (China), in 1999, and her Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of California, Riverside, in 2006. Before joining Embry-riddle, she worked in the consulting firm of Arup at Los Angeles office as a fire engineer. Her research interests include engineering education and its pedagogies. She is a professional member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineer, and a member of American Society of Engineering Education.

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Cassandra Gribbins Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

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Cassandra is a mechanical engineering graduate student of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, Florida. She obtained her undergraduate degree in aerospace engineering with minors in computer aided design and human factors in 2007, also at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Her graduate study is focusing on additive manufacturing and plastics design. She has participated in STEM Outreach events and has been a counselor for the Girls Exploring Math and Science summer camp.

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Ian T. Ferguson University of North Carolina, Charlotte

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I am currently a Professor and the Chair of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte). Prior to this I was a Professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) and the Director for the Focused Research Program on Next Generation Lighting. Prior to joining Georgia Tech I have had leadership positions in both academia and industry. My research has focused on the area of wide bandgap materials and devices (emitters, detectors and electronics) using GaN and ZnO, and developing these materials for energy and nanotechnology applications in the areas of illumination, solar power, spintronics, and nuclear detection. I have received competitive research grants and contracts from NSF, AFOSR, ONR, ARO, DARPA, NASA, and others totaling over $25M as lead investigator in industry and academia. As an international educator and researcher with active collaborations in the US, Europe and Asia, I have authored over 440 refereed journal and conference papers (H-Index is 32), seven book chapters, and have edited fourteen conference proceedings, one book, and multiple patents. I have given over 300 invited and contributed talks and seminars throughout the US, Europe and Asia. I have been actively involved in the entrepreneurial process of establishing new companies. Since arriving at Charlotte I co-founded and I am the Chairman of the Board for PiES, Project for innovation, Energy and Sustainability, a non-profit green business incubator that incubated seven companies. I am a Fellow of Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (IEEE), Institute of Physics (FInstP), and the International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE).

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Supplemental Multimedia Online Learning Tool (SMOLT) in Engineering EducationThis paper reports the development and implementation of a Supplemental Multimedia OnlineLearning Tool (SMOLT) to create an online self-study environment to supplement the classroominstruction in engineering courses. Multimedia forms of obtaining information have beenrecognized in the last twenty years as a way to supplement classroom instruction. It has beenwidely adopted by students when available and has proved to be an efficient way to enablestudents learning outcomes. Its value has been seen in both traditional and non-traditionallearning environments such as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). As increased internetbandwidth and new delivery systems became available, media-based teaching tools haveimproved especially for engineering applications in which complex components and concepts areoften difficult to visualize and understand. The value of a multimedia approach to supplementclassroom learning is well understood, however its implementation and long-term assessment arestill limited. Moreover, while MOOCs has been used to record lectures it does not mimic otheraspects of the student-faculty interaction for a more complete educational experience. In this work a series of SMOLTs, short 10 minutes long videos, based on differentfundamental engineering topics have been developed. These provide the students with anefficient way to review the topics covered in the class and should be transferrable across a rangeof engineering disciplines. The SMOLT is the next logical step from the MOOCs since it willmimic the one-on-one interaction that the student has with the instructor using a dialecticapproach. Moreover, the use of SMOLTs will also mimic the journey of a smolt, a youngsalmon that migrates from fresh water to the sea, which in this taxonomy transitions fromobtaining information to understanding. The effectiveness of SMOLTs will be assessed fordifferent engineering disciplines and classes at different institutions to understand under whichcontext they work best.

Sun, L., & Gribbins, C., & Ferguson, I. T. (2014, June), Supplemental Multimedia Online Learning Tool (SMOLT) in Engineering Education Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--23075

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