Development and evaluation of an educational software tool for geotechnical engineering
Timothy Robert Wyatt, Georgia Institute of Technology, United States
Georgia Institute of Technology . Awarded
The hypothesis of this dissertation is that computer technology, properly developed in accordance with tenets of learner-centered design, can deliver educational opportunities that support the learning (or development of understanding) of soil mechanics. A virtual reality geotechnical engineering laboratory is introduced as an authentic, interactive environment for soil mechanics education. An intrinsic scaffolding framework is provided to introduce the student gradually to soil mechanics concepts in the context of soil laboratory testing. Three “training” modules of increasing complexity (isotropic consolidation, consolidated drained shear, and consolidated undrained shear) correspond to specific learning objectives involving the interpretation of soil behavior data. Student proficiency with these objectives is assessed prior to each training session with a written quiz, during and at the completion of the training session with proficiency quizzes administered by the software, and at the completion of project activities performed using the software tool after the training session. Average student performance is shown to improve during the training session and over the course of project performance, with degree of participation and level of completion of the training session shown to correspond to increasing performance levels on the project. Use of the software tool is also shown to impact average scores on course exams, the traditional measure of proficiency in student understanding of soil mechanics. Degree of participation and level of completion of the training sessions are shown to correspond to improved performance on exams.
Wyatt, T.R. Development and evaluation of an educational software tool for geotechnical engineering. Ph.D. thesis, Georgia Institute of Technology.
Citation reproduced with permission of ProQuest LLC.
For copies of dissertations and theses: (800) 521-0600/(734) 761-4700 or https://dissexpress.umi.com