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The Modular Design of an Internet-Based Laboratory

The Modular Design of an Internet-Based Laboratory
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Author(s): Abdul Azad (Northern Illinois University, USA)
Copyright: 2008
Pages: 13
Source title: Handbook of Research on Digital Information Technologies: Innovations, Methods, and Ethical Issues
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Thomas Hansson (University of Southern Denmark, Denmark)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-970-0.ch001

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Abstract

This chapter presents the development of a modular Internet-based laboratory facility using cutting edge technologies along with its implementation for offering a laboratory course. The modules are developed using commercial products and are adaptable with a variety of laboratory experiments with little effort or maintenance cost. The developed facility has in-built capability to collect systems’ operational data that are used to evaluate the effectiveness of the system and assess the students learning behavior. Provision was also made to assess the level of learning while using the facility. An Internet-based laboratory facility involves real laboratory equipment being controlled remotely over the Internet that enables students to get access to laboratory equipment any time from any location, where most laboratory equipment is idle for a major part of its working life. Having these advantages, there is very little effort or interest within the academic community to implement the Internet-based laboratories for course offerings due to the complexity of operation, complicated design, extensive maintenance effort, higher implementation cost, lack of human interactions, and ethical issues. To address these problems the author has developed this modular Internet-based laboratory facility and studied its performance through a laboratory course.

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