Conference Paper

Introducing Mechanical Engineering Students to Online Robotics Laboratories

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Due to Covid-19, in-person robotics labs held in previous semesters were not possible. This paper explores a well-established method to give the students an exceptional learning experience in a robotics class. By surveying students, data was gathered to account for students’ perception when designing the laboratories and lab manuals. In addition, to find an adequate program for the labs, different software was researched and tested. The main factors used to select a software were intuitiveness, cost, online resources, operating system compatibility, Python programming, and software usage. It is concluded that the RoboDK software is the most suitable software for the laboratories, and updated manuals needed to be designed for the Spring 2021 class. Last semester, Spring 2021, another survey was conducted to get students’ feedback on the new lab system. With the additional data, further research may be conducted to refine the laboratories’ assignments and manuals. This paper’s main contribution is to use and analyze RoboDK for online robotics laboratories. Therefore, through this research, a new method was presented that gave students hands-on experience on online laboratories.

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