The integration of hypermedia based learning applications into undergraduate engineering degree courses
This thesis describes work carried out over the three years March 1993 to March 1996 concerning the integration of computer based learning elements into classically taught undergraduate engineering degree courses. The design and implementation of three separate computer applications are discussed, along with evaluation results from each. The first of these applications concerns the metallography of phase transformations and forms part of the first year engineering course in materials at the University of Southampton. The application is intended to teach both knowledge and understanding of the subject. The second application concerned engineering design. The intention of this application was to create an environment where the students could obtain all of the information required in creating the specifications for their design and for drawing up the design itself. This application is intended to allow the students to develop skills in engineering design. The final application was not 'intended for students' use directly. It is a shell from which applications of the style of the Phase Diagrams Application could be created and its intention was to encourage academics to create their own applications and thereby make the production of CBL materials more common. It is shown, within this thesis, that computer based learning/teaching can be used successfully to teach undergraduate engineering students knowledge and understanding of subjects and to improve their skill in using that understanding. Possible solutions to the problems in using CBL applications widely are also discussed, along with recommendations for a new approach to CBL development.