Interactive teaching tool for laws of thermodynamics and engine cycles
Choong, Kevin JiaJun.
Date of Issue2009
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Thermodynamics is a module that most engineering students will have to go through as part of their engineering syllabus. When it was first introduced in the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE, then known as School of Mechanical and Production Engineering), the subject was commented by many students to be tough. This was due to the difficulty faced by students in grasping the related laws of thermodynamics and concepts. Moreover, a general consensus among students has it that it was viewed as a dry and boring subject with difficult theories. However, more can be done to continue improvement of students understanding and appreciation of the subject matter. Yet, Thermodynamics is not merely about passing a module with difficult concepts. These concepts are the basis in which further concepts and theories that students will encounter in later years are built upon. Thus, more can be done to improve students interest and understanding of the Laws of Thermodynamics and hence establish their learning foundation. As such, this project aims to develop an E-learning tool to aid students in grasping the basic concepts of the Law of Thermodynamics. This Elearning tool aims to utilise interactive means to stimulate students interest in the subject matter. As students find interest in the subject, barriers such as perceived boredom, impatience, mental barriers and negative attitude automatically be dissolved. Experiments that students can perform at home are also provided to enforce practicality after presenting them with the theory. On top of that, this E-learning tool will mainly target the Secondary and Junior College students to aid them in these concepts. This will also help them in time to come when they enter the engineering stream in University. This is especially important as the general view of Physics (and especially Thermodynamics) being a difficult and boring subject also applies to them. Arresting such preconceived ideas would also be beneficial to them. In the development of the E-learning tool, we will take advantage of the current technologies available. As computers and mobile phones are widely available, these will be the targeted medium through which the E-learning materials will be disseminated to students. Thus, a main application would be created for Personal Computers whereas a mobile phone application will be added as a supplementary package (i.e. he mobile application will be a subset of the main application). As much as technological research need to be done, research on the aspect of education will also have to be carried out in order to increase the efficiency of the developed E-learning tool.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University