Asee peer logo

Using Online Education to Meet the Needs of Working Engineering Professionals

Download Paper |


2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Continuing Professional Development Division Technical Session 3

Tagged Division

Continuing Professional Development

Page Count


Page Numbers

26.1673.1 - 26.1673.14



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Sandra Denise Anderson P.E. University of Wisconsin Madison

visit author page

Sandra Anderson, PhD, is director of the Master of Engineering in Engine Systems program at the University of Wisconsin Madison. She worked in the aerospace industry designing jet aircraft engines before joining Ford Motor Company. At Ford, she trained power-train designers and engineers in CAD and CAE and produced web-based trainings on topics such as reliability and experimentaldesign. She also worked in the Office of the Technical Fellow, exploring new technologies to automate the product development process and shorten product development time. Anderson received her PhD from the University of Oklahoma in aerospace engineering. She also has an MBA degree from the University of Dallas and is a six-sigma black belt.

visit author page


Kevin Hoag Southwest Research Institute

visit author page

Kevin Hoag is an Institute Engineer at the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas. At this private, non-profit research institute he is active in the development of advanced engines for improved efficiency and reduced emissions. He also holds a teaching appointment at the University of Wisconsin, where he teaches in the web-based Master of Engineering in Engine Systems program.

visit author page

Download Paper |


Creating a Collaborative Learning Environment in On-line Engineering EducationA number of strategies were employed to create a collaborative learning environmentwithin the reviewed on-line engineering master’s degree. This engineering degree wasspecifically designed to be collaborative, distance and for working professionals. Thediscussed collaborative learning methods can be applied across a broad range of technicaland engineering education, including both on-campus and off campus programs. Theprimary methods of creating a collaborative environment include facilitating increasedinteraction among students, creating an environment of collaboration rather thancompetition, capitalizing on the students’ interest and specialized knowledge, andeffective use of team projects and technical presentations. Interaction among the studentsis increased due to face-to-face interaction at residency, life web-conferences, groupprojects, weekly assigned discussions, and availability of small group student initiatedweb conferences. A collaborative environment is achieved by rewarding contributions todiscussion forums and receiving an individual grade component for contribution to groupprojects. Capitalizing on student knowledge and interest is done through well-designeddiscussion forum questions and providing topic freedom within a framework for groupprojects. End result, the referenced master’s degree program has a greater than 90 percentgraduation rate, the students form friends and business associates they have for life, theprogram has filled to capacity for the last 3 years, and the majority of new students werereferred to the program by a current student or alumni.

Anderson, S. D., & Hoag, K. (2015, June), Using Online Education to Meet the Needs of Working Engineering Professionals Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.25009

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: © 2015 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