A WEB-BASED LEARNING ENVIRONMENT FOR TEXTILE ENGINEERING EDUCATION
William Daniel Cote
Most of the tutoring systems developed during the past two decades have been in the fields of math, science or computer programming. There is a lack of intelligent computer-assisted instruction (ICAI) system applications in Textile Engineering. Standup lecture in the traditional classroom environment is the primary means of instruction. However, new electronic technologies in computers and communications have enhanced traditional teaching methods. In particular, the Internet and the World Wide Web (WWW) have provided a medium for networking information all over the world. TFE-WEST (TFE-WEST: Textile and Fiber Engineering Web-based Educational Support Tool) was designed to incorporate the WWW backbone into an ICAI system to provide Textile Engineering knowledge to students in a classroom environment.
TFE-WEST was designed to use an organized knowledge base made up of two databases one containing user profiles and the other containing domain information. For students, the system has two modes a tutoring mode and a search mode. The system has an administrative mode which would only be used by the instructor. TFE-WEST has the capability of administering quizzes to users and grading the quizzes. The instructor could use the administrative functions of the system to update student account information and to review student grades. TFE-WEST has been tested and evaluated and proves to be a useful tool for teaching introductory Textile Engineering knowledge to freshman students and new hires in the textile industry.