Enabling effective and inclusive learning opportunities with software-based remote access laboratories

Kist, Alexander A. and Basnet, Badri (2013) Enabling effective and inclusive learning opportunities with software-based remote access laboratories. In: 10th International Conference on Remote Engineering and Virtual Instrumentation (REV 2013): Moving from Design to Innovation and Impact, 6-8 Feb 2013, Sydney, Australia.

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Practical or laboratory-based learning activities are an important part of engineering and surveying education. Offering such activities to distance education students is both difficult and expensive. Remote Access Laboratory (RAL) systems are gaining popularity to provide students with access to on-campus rigs or hardware. Such RAL systems are equally versatile in providing on-campus software access to distance students. In the discipline of Surveying and Spatial Science, the RAL system is being used as an avenue for providing Geographic Information System (GIS) software access to distance students. In this study, the effectiveness of RAL based software activities in supporting student learning is investigated as part of a larger study involving its general use. This project investigates the research question whether RAL-based software activities can address the same learning outcomes as face-to-face practical classes. Data collected from students' discussion forum and via interviews with teaching staff members were analysed. This project provides a clear case in which the use of RAL technology has provided inclusive educational opportunities more efficiently. The key outcomes that students can achieve similar learning outcomes undertaking the activities remotely, system access and usability are critical, the learning activity needs to be supported by comprehensive learning materials and the staff effort to develop such an activity is considerable. These general results are also applicable to experiments that involve physical hardware.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright © 2013 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Inc. Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering
Date Deposited: 21 May 2013 23:53
Last Modified: 15 May 2015 01:54
Uncontrolled Keywords: conceptual experimentation; geographic information systems; remote access laboratories; software experiments
Fields of Research : 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0805 Distributed Computing > 080502 Mobile Technologies
13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130212 Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1109/REV.2013.6502897
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/23528

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