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eLearning Hands-On: Blending Interactive eLearning with Practical Engineering Laboratory
ARTICLE

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IJILT Volume 33, Number 5, ISSN 2056-4880

Abstract

Purpose: Integrating laboratory work into interactive engineering eLearning contents augments theory with practice while simultaneously ameliorating the apparent theory-practice gap in traditional eLearning. The purpose of this paper is to assess and recommend media that currently fulfil this desirable dual pedagogical goal. Design/methodology/approach: The qualitative approach compares the eLearner-content interactivity deriving from Mathematica's Computable Document File (CDF) application, Pearson's myLab and Lucas-Nuelle's UniTrain-I. Illustrative interactive examples written in JavaScript and Java are thereby drawn from an engineering eLearning course developed at the University of Botswana (UB). Findings: Based on its scientific rigour, wide application scope, engineering analytical depth, minimal programming requirements and cross-subject-cum-faculty application and deployment potential, the authors found the CDF to be a versatile environment for generating dynamically interactive eLearning contents. The UniTrain-I, blending a multimedia information and communication technology (ICT)-based interactive eLearner-content philosophy with practical laboratory experimentation, is recommended for meeting the paper's dual eLearning goal as the most adept framework to-date, blending dynamic interactive eLearning content with laboratory hands-on engineering experimentation. Research limitations/implications: The lack of other competing frameworks limited the considerations to only the three mentioned above. Consequently, the results are subject to review as the ongoing research advances new insights. Originality/value: The conclusions help eLearning designers plan ICT-based resources for integration into practical electrical engineering eLearning pedagogy and both CDF and UniTrain-I help dispel the prevailing apparent disquiet regarding the effectiveness of the eLearning-mediated electrical engineering pedagogy. In addition, the cited examples document an original electrical engineering eLearning course developed at the UB.

Citation

Kiravu, C., Yanev, K.M., Tunde, M.O., Jeffrey, A.M., Schoenian, D. & Renner, A. (2016). eLearning Hands-On: Blending Interactive eLearning with Practical Engineering Laboratory. International Journal of Information and Learning Technology, 33(5), 278-299. Retrieved March 21, 2019 from .

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