Comparing the effectiveness and students' learning in an introductory engineering economy course offered online versus inclass format
The effectiveness of delivering online engineering courses have been debated and documented since the introduction of the internet. In this study an introductory engineering economy course was offered both online and in-class during the Spring 2008 semester. Both courses were convened by the same instructor using the same textbook and accompanied MS-PowerPoint slides. The students who participated in the in-class course met twice a week for 90 minutes, where the course material was delivered by the course instructor. The instructional material for the online course was deposited on a secure website available to students 24 hours/seven days a week. In addition, for the online course, an audio of the lecture materials was embedded using an internet-software, "Camtasia-Studio 6.0." Prior to the beginning of the semester, the students' GPAs in both, in-class (control group) and the online (experimental group) were recorded and compared to ensure no significant differences in these two groups. A uniform pre-test was administered to both groups to identify any significant prior knowledge about the subject matter between these two groups. Several hypotheses were tested to assess the overall effectiveness of the online course in comparison to the traditional in-class lectures. In addition, the effects of gender and class standing were compared and evaluated between these two methods (in-class vs. online).
author list (cited authors)
Akladios, M., Lim, G., & Parsaei, H. R.