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A scheduling system for shared online laboratory resources

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3 Author(s)
Yaoye Li ; Dept. of Mech. Eng., Stevens Inst. of Technol., Hoboken, NJ ; Esche, S.K. ; Chassapis, C.

Online educational laboratories are increasingly deployed in traditional on-campus as well as Web-based distance-learning classes around the world. Recently, various educational institutions have attempted to leverage their online laboratory developments by broadly sharing them across institutional boundaries. While virtual experiments represent scalable software simulations, hardware-based remote experiments can only be used by one person or group of persons at a time. This paper describes the design and prototype implementation of a scheduling system for shared online laboratory resources, which can be employed to coordinate reservations of usage time for multiple geographically dispersed users. This scheduling system facilitates various priority levels for user requests, thus allowing different modes of usage, such as experimental demonstrations during a live class by an instructor and experiments carried out either individually by one user or collaboratively by multiple users. This software module can also be integrated into a more general resource management system, which enables the standardized description of and efficient search for online resources. Collectively, such tools have the potential for leading to fundamental changes in engineering and science laboratory education.

Published in:

Frontiers in Education Conference, 2008. FIE 2008. 38th Annual

Date of Conference:

22-25 Oct. 2008