Laboratory e-tutor for Engineering

Aldo Rona


The laboratory e-tutor is a bespoke collection of self-running presentations in Adobe Communicator on Blackboard, written for the second year thermodynamic and fluid dynamic laboratories. The e-tutor has significantly changed the way laboratories are taught in Engineering by providing a bespoke step by step video guidance to each experiment in the form of an interactive presentation. Building upon the existing LabView computer based data collection and processing, the e-tutor uses the existing PCs attached to each experiment. It enhances the paper instruction sheet that is handed out at the beginning of each laboratory session by providing a multi-media content that enables students to start and run safely through the experiment and data analysis, developing their independent learning and their confidence in performing hands on engineering tasks. Students liked very much the blended learning environment of an e-tutor and a member of staff at hand to ask clarifications if in doubt and embraced the new technology seamlessly. Academic staff are able to focus on stimulating the critical appraisal of the experimental results by the students, which makes laboratories more enjoyable by students and staff.

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