Virtual labs in the engineering curriculum

TitleVirtual labs in the engineering curriculum
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference2004
AuthorsMcStravick, DM, O'Malley, MK
Conference NameASEE Annual Conference Proceedings
Pagination15293 - 15304
Conference LocationSalt Lake City, UT, United States
KeywordsComputer programming languages; Computer simulation; Curricula; Data reduction; Graphic methods; Students; Visualization
Abstract

Computer simulations have been developed for use as student exercises to illustrate concepts required for various engineering courses. These simulations or Virtual Labs are highly graphical and interactive to help undergraduate students understand basic concepts by graphically solving problems and by visualization of real-time parametric changes. These Virtual Labs (or VL's) can be used productively in conjunction with existing laboratory experiments as pre-lab exercises, but the more important benefit is realized in cases of concepts that have no experimental support and in courses that traditionally do not have an associated laboratory course. These VL's are generated in the software package Lab VIEW, which offers graphical interfaces for the student and can be formatted as standalone files, which the students can download and access at their convenience, without the need for Lab VIEW software. Currently five VL's have been generated and several have been evaluated by students in appropriate classes.