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"Real" experiments or computers in labs - Opposites or synergies?: Experiences from a course in electric circuit theory
ITN, Campus Norrköping, Linköping University, Norrköping, Sweden.
Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH, Computer Science and Informatics.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2823-5245
2017 (English)In: Proceedings of the 45th SEFI Annual Conference 2017 - Education Excellence for Sustainability, SEFI 2017 / [ed] J. Bernardino, J. Rocha,J. C. Quadrado, European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI) , 2017, p. 1300-1307Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In this study we report from our experiences designing and re-designing a lab where engineering students studied transient response in electric circuits. In the first version of the lab students had difficulties doing the mathematical modeling of the experimentally measured graphs as it required students' to link the time- and frequency domains as well as the object/event and theory/model worlds simultaneously. In the re-designed lab some computer simulations were included together with the original experiments on real circuits. The simulations opened up for learning and enabled students to establish links that are hard access directly with real experiments. Still doing real experiments is important to secure students ability to make links between models and theories and the physical reality. This study demonstrates that synergetic learning effects can be achieved by a careful design using an insightful combination of real experiments and computer simulations. Hence, we propose that the question of "real" experiments or "virtual" labs using computer simulations are best for students' learning is not an either or question. Rather, it is a question of finding the right blend to achieve synergetic effects.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
European Society for Engineering Education (SEFI) , 2017. p. 1300-1307
Keywords [en]
Experiential learning, Interaction analysis, Modeling, Simulations, Circuit theory, Education computing, Electric network analysis, Electric network parameters, Laboratories, Models, Students, Timing circuits, Learning effects, Physical reality, Real circuits, Synergetic effect, Time and frequency domains, Education
National Category
Didactics Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-38311Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85034765609ISBN: 9789899887572 OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-38311DiVA, id: diva2:1169898
Conference
45th Annual Conference of the European Society for Engineering Education, SEFI 2017, 18 September 2017 through 21 September 2017
Funder
Swedish Research CouncilAvailable from: 2017-12-30 Created: 2017-12-30 Last updated: 2017-12-30Bibliographically approved

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Carstensen, Anna-Karin

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CiteExportLink to record
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  • apa
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