Transformation of a Physical Experiment into a Virtual Experiment for Web Applications

S.K. Chaturvedi and T.M. Abdel-Salam (USA)


Web-Learning, virtual experiment, distance education


This paper presents the rationale as well as the methodology for transforming a physical experiment into a web-based virtual experiment for application in an undergraduate engineering laboratory course. Students use the virtual experiment as a pre-lab practice tool in conjunction with the scheduled physical laboratory experiment session. This combination of a virtual session for learning experimental procedure and data acquisition, and the physical experiment session represents an innovative use of technology to provide students hands-on experience in both physical and virtual domains. A virtual experiment from the thermo-fluids laboratory in the undergraduate mechanical engineering curriculum is described and discussed. Assessment results are presented to quantify student learning gains due to incorporation of the module in the thermo-fluids laboratory course.

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