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Video-Based Concept Tutors with Assessment in Game Format for Engineering Courses

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2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


New Orleans, Louisiana

Publication Date

June 26, 2016

Start Date

June 26, 2016

End Date

August 28, 2016





Conference Session

Mechanical Engineering Assessment

Tagged Division

Mechanical Engineering

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Paper Authors


Eliza A. Banu Auburn University

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Dr. Eliza Banu has a Bachelors degree in Electrical Engineering from Polytechnic University of Bucharest and completed her Ph.D. program in Mechanical Engineering at Auburn University in 2014. Dr. Banu's research interests are in the dynamics of impact of rigid bodies and human with granular matter as well as developing innovative instructional materials. She has been working with LITEE (Laboratory for Innovative Technology and Engineering Education) at Auburn University since 2010.

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P.K. Raju Auburn University

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Dr. P. K. Raju is the Thomas Walter Distinguished professor of Mechanical Engineering at Auburn University. He is the co-founder and director of the NSF-funded Laboratory for Innovative Technology and Engineering Education (LITEE). LITEE has been recently recognized by the National Academy of Engineering as one of the model programs in the country that has successfully infused real world experiences into engineering undergraduate education. He is also the founder and director of the Auburn Engineering Technical Assistance Program (AETAP). Prior to coming to Auburn in 1984, Dr. Raju held faculty positions in several universities in India and visiting positions at the Catholic University of America, Purdue University, and the Technical University of Berlin. Dr. Raju received his Ph.D. from the Indian institute of Technology, Madras, in 1977. He has made significant research contributions in engineering education and innovations, acoustics, noise control, nondestructive evaluation and technology transfer, resulting in award-winning and significant breakthroughs. He has received a total of $12 million in funding, including grants from industries, the United Nations, the National Science Foundation, NIST, NIH, EDA and other U.S. and international agencies. He has published 24 books, eight book chapters and 200 papers in journals and conference proceedings. He has received several awards for his teaching, research and outreach work from INEER, NASA, NSF, ASME, ASEE, Auburn University and others. He served as an United Nations and UNDP expert and as a World Bank lecturer. He has held Invited Professorships at the Université Bordeaux I, Talence, and Université Du Havre, Le Harve, France. He has been an invited/ keynote speaker at several national and international conferences. He is a Fellow of the American Society for Engineering Education, a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers (India), and a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of India. He is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of STEM Education: Innovations and Research

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ABSTRACT: Many students in mechanical engineering fail to see the connection between the knowledge gained for different classes or the usage of concepts learned in math classes in an engineering setting. In this study, we discuss about the development, implementation and evaluation of a video based instructional tool, called concept tutor. These concept tutors focus on one concept at a time and they can be used as supplemental material to a lecture. These supplements provide additional help to students in explaining the concept taught in class and reinforces their learning, while making the learning process diverse by giving the option of playing a game while testing their knowledge.

The concept tutor consists of three phases: first phase is definition and real-world applications of the concept. Second phase includes a step-by-step presentation and instruction of the concept in a general format and then through a numerical problem. Each step is a video followed by elements of the third phase. This phase consists of assessments in the form of multiple-choice questions to provide the viewer an assessment of the effectiveness of the material in enhancing the learning of the concept. The questions after each topic are in a format that allows the students to choose the environment of the testing. They can choose either a regular multiple-choice assessment or a game based assessment. The focus for the concept tutor applications is to engage students in authentic intellectual work that facilitates the assimilation of knowledge in a disciplined manner that will have value beyond schoolwork.

Two applications have been developed for a Mechanical Engineering class. For Kinematics and Dynamics of Machines (MECH2120) course at a large south-eastern university the following modules have been created: Cross-Product Tutor, Calculation of the Determinant of a 3 by 3 matrix Tutor. These applications were used with the purpose of refreshing students on how to calculate a cross-product and the determinant of a 3 by 3 matrix. These concepts are prerequisite and vital for the engineering concepts learned in this class. The tutor applications were used as a supplement to conventional teaching material to allow a self-paced review.

The concept tutors were tested in an experimental/control group setting. The quantitative and qualitative results obtained from surveys show that students find such materials useful in the learning process. This work presents the development methodology of such tutors, implementation in class and the evaluation results.

Banu, E. A., & Raju, P. (2016, June), Video-Based Concept Tutors with Assessment in Game Format for Engineering Courses Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.27182

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