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Vb For Control And Instrumentation Program

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.1132.1 - 6.1132.8

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Paper Authors

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Weining Feng

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Alberto Gomez-Rivas

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

Session 1874

VB for Control & Instrumentation Program

W. Feng, A. Gomez-Rivas

Engineering Technology Department University of Houston-Downtown One Main Street Houston, TX 77002


This paper assesses the unique role of Visual Basic (VB) in the curriculum development for a four-year degree program in Control & Instrumentation Engineering Technology. A VB program is presented which was developed in-house and has been used to demonstrate the fundamentals of control system theory and techniques. Also presented is a course project in which a VB program was successfully used for a real-time temperature control system. It is concluded that, by embedding VB programming to the Control and Instrumentation curriculum, we have created an effective and efficient teaching and learning approach and, as a result, students not only have gained the technical knowledge but also have significantly developed their skills for computer applications.

I. Introduction

Over the last two decades we have seen a strong growing trend of computer applications, especially PC applications, in the control and instrumentation industry. In response to the needs of current industry and graduate job market, we have revamped our old Electrical Engineering Technology program into a new Control and Instrumentation Engineering Technology program, by shifting the emphasis from hardware and component oriented courses to hardware/software interfacing and integrated systems oriented courses.

Visual Basic (VB) has become the most widely used programming language for its easiness of graphic user interface and language features. VB has been used for application developments in business as well as science and engineering communities1. With each new edition, new features have been added to the language and it is becoming increasingly powerful. When our students start their freshmen level, a significant number of them have little experience with computer usage. Some of them are even reluctant to touch the computer keyboard. It is at this point that they are introduced to computer applications via VB programming, and the results are amazing. After one semester, students’ confidence with computer applications has been boosted and they become eager to apply and expand their knowledge and skills in computer programming. In view of this

Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Feng, W., & Gomez-Rivas, A. (2001, June), Vb For Control And Instrumentation Program Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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