E-laboratory design and implementation for enhanced science, technology and engineering education

James Uhomoibhi, William Morton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose – This paper aims to report on the design and implementation of an e-laboratory for enhanced science, technology and engineering education studies. Design/methodology/approach – The paper assesses a computer-based e-laboratory, designed for new entrants to science, technology and engineering programmes of study in further and higher education to enable them complete proper “hands-on” (not simulation) laboratory experiments off-campus and also in virtual learning environments accessible remotely. The development of such a laboratory was in response to the inherent inability of web-based learning environments to duplicate, off-campus, the laboratory facilities and availability on-campus. The measurement of effectiveness relates to whether a laboratory task can be accurately and completely achieved. Common parameters included percentage task completion, error rate and assistance required. Operations under different conditions were studied and observations made from comparison on implementations. Findings – E-laboratories were found to be more student-centred with learners taking responsibility for their own learning.. The face-to-face pre-computer scenario learners had a very low completion rate, a high error rate and required constant assistance. The computer-based scenario resulted in a high completion rate, low error rate and a significant reduction in learner supervision. Research limitations/implications – The technical constraints imposed by present online environments, the resulting impact on specific learning styles, and possible solutions to overcome these limitations are discussed. Practical implications – Both quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews established a positive impact on student learning, thus justifying development of similar systems. More research and applications could follow as this has the potential to impact positively on development and use of e-labs for enhanced science, technology and engineering studies in terms of costs, time and space requirements. Originality/value – The recent interest and advances in the development of remote and virtual labs has shown that students of today, who are digital natives, especially those in the fields of science, technology and engineering, find the use of e-laboratories very useful in enhancing their studies, encouraging them to use familiar technologies to access and do experiments either remotely or virtually online, thereby enhancing their learning. The approach adopted is unique and original, blending both virtual and hands-on approach to experimental studies.
LanguageEnglish
Pages367-377
JournalCampus-Wide Information Systems
Volume28
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Fingerprint

Engineering education
engineering
science
education
Students
learning
learning environment
assistance
scenario
program of study
student
laboratory experiment
qualitative interview
supervision
Education
Experiments
Availability
responsibility
simulation
present

Keywords

  • Computer-based e-laboratory
  • E-learning
  • Engineering education
  • Higher education
  • Learning styles
  • Northern Ireland
  • Simulation

Cite this

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title = "E-laboratory design and implementation for enhanced science, technology and engineering education",
abstract = "Purpose – This paper aims to report on the design and implementation of an e-laboratory for enhanced science, technology and engineering education studies. Design/methodology/approach – The paper assesses a computer-based e-laboratory, designed for new entrants to science, technology and engineering programmes of study in further and higher education to enable them complete proper “hands-on” (not simulation) laboratory experiments off-campus and also in virtual learning environments accessible remotely. The development of such a laboratory was in response to the inherent inability of web-based learning environments to duplicate, off-campus, the laboratory facilities and availability on-campus. The measurement of effectiveness relates to whether a laboratory task can be accurately and completely achieved. Common parameters included percentage task completion, error rate and assistance required. Operations under different conditions were studied and observations made from comparison on implementations. Findings – E-laboratories were found to be more student-centred with learners taking responsibility for their own learning.. The face-to-face pre-computer scenario learners had a very low completion rate, a high error rate and required constant assistance. The computer-based scenario resulted in a high completion rate, low error rate and a significant reduction in learner supervision. Research limitations/implications – The technical constraints imposed by present online environments, the resulting impact on specific learning styles, and possible solutions to overcome these limitations are discussed. Practical implications – Both quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews established a positive impact on student learning, thus justifying development of similar systems. More research and applications could follow as this has the potential to impact positively on development and use of e-labs for enhanced science, technology and engineering studies in terms of costs, time and space requirements. Originality/value – The recent interest and advances in the development of remote and virtual labs has shown that students of today, who are digital natives, especially those in the fields of science, technology and engineering, find the use of e-laboratories very useful in enhancing their studies, encouraging them to use familiar technologies to access and do experiments either remotely or virtually online, thereby enhancing their learning. The approach adopted is unique and original, blending both virtual and hands-on approach to experimental studies.",
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author = "James Uhomoibhi and William Morton",
note = "Reference text: Aladejana, F. and Aderibigbe, O. (2007), “Science laboratory environment and academic performance”, Journal Science Educational Technology, Vol. 16, pp. 500-6. Aziz, E., Esche, S. and Chassapis, C. (2007), “IT-enhanced laboratory experience within a modern undergraduate engineering curriculum”, paper presented at the International Conference of Engineering Education. Blake, C. and Scanlon, E. (2007), “Reconsidering simulations in science education at a distance: features of effective use”, Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, Vol. 23, pp. 491-502. British Standards Institute (2006), BS ISO/IEC 25062:2006 Software Engineering – Software Product Quality Requirements and Evaluation (Square) – Common Industry Format (CIF) for Usability Test Reports, British Standards Institute, London. Cato, J. (2000), User-centered Web Design, Pearson Education, London. Cornelius (2001), “Online tutoring e-book”, available at: http://otis.scotcit.ac.uk/onlinebook/ Gardner, H. (1999), Intelligence Reframed. Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century, Basic Books, New York, NY. Goldfinch, J. and Hughes, M. (2007), “Skills, learning styles and success of first-year undergraduates”, Active Learning in Higher Education, Vol. 8 No. 4, pp. 259-73. Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) (2009), Enhancing Learning and Teaching through the Use of Technology, HEFCE 2009/12, HEFCE, Stoke Gifford. Honey, P. and Mumford, A. (1992), The Manual of Learning Styles, Peter Honey, Maidenhead. Kolb, D. (1984), Experiential Learning Experience as the Source of Learning and Development, Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Kuester, F. and Hutchinson, T.C. (2007), “A virtualized laboratory for earthquake engineering education”, Computer Applications in Engineering Education, Vol. 15 No. 1, pp. 15-29. Laurillard, D. (1994), Rethinking University Teaching. A Framework for the Effective Use of Educational Technology, Routledge, London. Lewis, J. (1993), IBM Computer Usability Satification Questionnaires: Psychometric Evaluation and Instruction for Use, Technical Report 54.786, IBM Corporation. Marriott, N. and Marriott, P. (2003), “Student learning style preferences and undergraduate academic performance at two UK universities”, International Journal of Management Education, Vol. 3 No. 1, pp. 4-13. Mohamed, A. (2004), “Foundations of educational theory for online learning”, in Anderson, T. and Elloumi, F. (Eds), Theory and Practice of Online Learning, Athabasca University, Athabasca. Ornstein, A. (2006), “The frequency of hands-on experimentation and student attitudes toward science: a statistically significant relation”, Journal of Science and Technology, Vol. 15 No. 3, October, pp. 285-97. Pigg, K., Busch, L. and Lacy, W. (1980), “Learning styles in adult education: a study of county extension agents”, Adult Education Quarterly, Vol. 30 No. 4, pp. 233-44. Salmon, G. (2003), E-moderating. The Key to Teaching and Learning OnLine, Taylor & Francis, London. Tejedor, G., Martinez, M. and Vidaurre, B. (2008), “An online virtual laboratory of electricity”, International Journal of Distance Education Technologies, Vol. 6 No. 2, pp. 21-33.",
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E-laboratory design and implementation for enhanced science, technology and engineering education. / Uhomoibhi, James; Morton, William.

In: Campus-Wide Information Systems, Vol. 28, No. 5, 2011, p. 367-377.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - E-laboratory design and implementation for enhanced science, technology and engineering education

AU - Uhomoibhi, James

AU - Morton, William

N1 - Reference text: Aladejana, F. and Aderibigbe, O. (2007), “Science laboratory environment and academic performance”, Journal Science Educational Technology, Vol. 16, pp. 500-6. Aziz, E., Esche, S. and Chassapis, C. (2007), “IT-enhanced laboratory experience within a modern undergraduate engineering curriculum”, paper presented at the International Conference of Engineering Education. Blake, C. and Scanlon, E. (2007), “Reconsidering simulations in science education at a distance: features of effective use”, Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, Vol. 23, pp. 491-502. British Standards Institute (2006), BS ISO/IEC 25062:2006 Software Engineering – Software Product Quality Requirements and Evaluation (Square) – Common Industry Format (CIF) for Usability Test Reports, British Standards Institute, London. Cato, J. (2000), User-centered Web Design, Pearson Education, London. Cornelius (2001), “Online tutoring e-book”, available at: http://otis.scotcit.ac.uk/onlinebook/ Gardner, H. (1999), Intelligence Reframed. Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century, Basic Books, New York, NY. Goldfinch, J. and Hughes, M. (2007), “Skills, learning styles and success of first-year undergraduates”, Active Learning in Higher Education, Vol. 8 No. 4, pp. 259-73. Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) (2009), Enhancing Learning and Teaching through the Use of Technology, HEFCE 2009/12, HEFCE, Stoke Gifford. Honey, P. and Mumford, A. (1992), The Manual of Learning Styles, Peter Honey, Maidenhead. Kolb, D. (1984), Experiential Learning Experience as the Source of Learning and Development, Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Kuester, F. and Hutchinson, T.C. (2007), “A virtualized laboratory for earthquake engineering education”, Computer Applications in Engineering Education, Vol. 15 No. 1, pp. 15-29. Laurillard, D. (1994), Rethinking University Teaching. A Framework for the Effective Use of Educational Technology, Routledge, London. Lewis, J. (1993), IBM Computer Usability Satification Questionnaires: Psychometric Evaluation and Instruction for Use, Technical Report 54.786, IBM Corporation. Marriott, N. and Marriott, P. (2003), “Student learning style preferences and undergraduate academic performance at two UK universities”, International Journal of Management Education, Vol. 3 No. 1, pp. 4-13. Mohamed, A. (2004), “Foundations of educational theory for online learning”, in Anderson, T. and Elloumi, F. (Eds), Theory and Practice of Online Learning, Athabasca University, Athabasca. Ornstein, A. (2006), “The frequency of hands-on experimentation and student attitudes toward science: a statistically significant relation”, Journal of Science and Technology, Vol. 15 No. 3, October, pp. 285-97. Pigg, K., Busch, L. and Lacy, W. (1980), “Learning styles in adult education: a study of county extension agents”, Adult Education Quarterly, Vol. 30 No. 4, pp. 233-44. Salmon, G. (2003), E-moderating. The Key to Teaching and Learning OnLine, Taylor & Francis, London. Tejedor, G., Martinez, M. and Vidaurre, B. (2008), “An online virtual laboratory of electricity”, International Journal of Distance Education Technologies, Vol. 6 No. 2, pp. 21-33.

PY - 2011

Y1 - 2011

N2 - Purpose – This paper aims to report on the design and implementation of an e-laboratory for enhanced science, technology and engineering education studies. Design/methodology/approach – The paper assesses a computer-based e-laboratory, designed for new entrants to science, technology and engineering programmes of study in further and higher education to enable them complete proper “hands-on” (not simulation) laboratory experiments off-campus and also in virtual learning environments accessible remotely. The development of such a laboratory was in response to the inherent inability of web-based learning environments to duplicate, off-campus, the laboratory facilities and availability on-campus. The measurement of effectiveness relates to whether a laboratory task can be accurately and completely achieved. Common parameters included percentage task completion, error rate and assistance required. Operations under different conditions were studied and observations made from comparison on implementations. Findings – E-laboratories were found to be more student-centred with learners taking responsibility for their own learning.. The face-to-face pre-computer scenario learners had a very low completion rate, a high error rate and required constant assistance. The computer-based scenario resulted in a high completion rate, low error rate and a significant reduction in learner supervision. Research limitations/implications – The technical constraints imposed by present online environments, the resulting impact on specific learning styles, and possible solutions to overcome these limitations are discussed. Practical implications – Both quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews established a positive impact on student learning, thus justifying development of similar systems. More research and applications could follow as this has the potential to impact positively on development and use of e-labs for enhanced science, technology and engineering studies in terms of costs, time and space requirements. Originality/value – The recent interest and advances in the development of remote and virtual labs has shown that students of today, who are digital natives, especially those in the fields of science, technology and engineering, find the use of e-laboratories very useful in enhancing their studies, encouraging them to use familiar technologies to access and do experiments either remotely or virtually online, thereby enhancing their learning. The approach adopted is unique and original, blending both virtual and hands-on approach to experimental studies.

AB - Purpose – This paper aims to report on the design and implementation of an e-laboratory for enhanced science, technology and engineering education studies. Design/methodology/approach – The paper assesses a computer-based e-laboratory, designed for new entrants to science, technology and engineering programmes of study in further and higher education to enable them complete proper “hands-on” (not simulation) laboratory experiments off-campus and also in virtual learning environments accessible remotely. The development of such a laboratory was in response to the inherent inability of web-based learning environments to duplicate, off-campus, the laboratory facilities and availability on-campus. The measurement of effectiveness relates to whether a laboratory task can be accurately and completely achieved. Common parameters included percentage task completion, error rate and assistance required. Operations under different conditions were studied and observations made from comparison on implementations. Findings – E-laboratories were found to be more student-centred with learners taking responsibility for their own learning.. The face-to-face pre-computer scenario learners had a very low completion rate, a high error rate and required constant assistance. The computer-based scenario resulted in a high completion rate, low error rate and a significant reduction in learner supervision. Research limitations/implications – The technical constraints imposed by present online environments, the resulting impact on specific learning styles, and possible solutions to overcome these limitations are discussed. Practical implications – Both quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews established a positive impact on student learning, thus justifying development of similar systems. More research and applications could follow as this has the potential to impact positively on development and use of e-labs for enhanced science, technology and engineering studies in terms of costs, time and space requirements. Originality/value – The recent interest and advances in the development of remote and virtual labs has shown that students of today, who are digital natives, especially those in the fields of science, technology and engineering, find the use of e-laboratories very useful in enhancing their studies, encouraging them to use familiar technologies to access and do experiments either remotely or virtually online, thereby enhancing their learning. The approach adopted is unique and original, blending both virtual and hands-on approach to experimental studies.

KW - Computer-based e-laboratory

KW - E-learning

KW - Engineering education

KW - Higher education

KW - Learning styles

KW - Northern Ireland

KW - Simulation

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DO - 10.1108/10650741111181634

M3 - Article

VL - 28

SP - 367

EP - 377

JO - Campus-Wide Information Systems

T2 - Campus-Wide Information Systems

JF - Campus-Wide Information Systems

SN - 1065-0741

IS - 5

ER -