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Programmed instruction is being used to teach use of the oscilloscope in the first electrical engineering laboratory course at the University of Texas. A programmed text was developed that breaks down the process of operating a scope into a series of logical steps starting with deflection of the electron beam and continuing through proper use of the triggering controls to measure the phase difference between two waveforms. Students take from 8 to 45 hours to complete the program, which requires both preparation and laboratory work. Results from practical examinations and observation of student performance in later courses indicate that students learn to use the oscilloscope more effectively from the program than from conventional laboratory instruction. Use of programmed instruction in the first course assures that every student learns to use the oscilloscope and provides for a wide range of individual abilities.