Science topic

Engineering Education - Science topic

Engineering education is the activity of teaching knowledge and principles related to the professional practice of engineering.
Questions related to Engineering Education
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My feeling/perception is that *most* (even the vast majority of) undergraduate engineering degree programs worldwide:
(a) Don't or barely include systems thinking in the learning objectives of their course syllabi.
(b) Are (still) heavily invested in passive instructional methods that tend not to foster students’ systems thinking. Meaning, lectures and recitations are the majority and the norm over active learning methods which involve application, collaboration, discussion, and reflection by students.
(c) Don’t provide instructors with the pedagogical training required to foster and assess students’ systems thinking.
(d) Don’t assess students’ systems thinking in any documented and consistent way. I’m not even getting into whether the assessment is valid, reliable, and cost-effective.
All the above are especially absent in the earlier years of the degree program.
Question 1: What are your thoughts about my perception of the landscape? Does it match what you know or feel?
Question 2: Is anyone aware of studies that survey systems thinking inclusion in undergraduate engineering curricula (worldwide, US, or in any other country)?
Looking forward to your comments, facts, and opinions on these questions or on anything else that comes to mind!
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لا ليس بشكل كاف وانما يحتاج الى السعي الشخصي والجهد
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👨‍🏫 Are you teaching in primary, secondary or higher education? Do you usually use videos as complementary resource in your classes? I would like this ResearchGate space to serve us to enhance our classes, by discussing on the main benefits and inconveniencies encountered when trying to integrate videos as pedagogical aids. Let's share our experience!
👍 As per my experience in integrating videos in STEM disciplines, they have noticeably increased the interest of students in the subject, as well as their motivation. When using videos for both conceptual and procedural learning it is expected to find an increase in performance (which is reported in literature). In my case studies I haven't been able to isolate their effect because it was developed during covid-19 pandemics and there were many factors affecting students' performance. However, a combination between quantitative and qualitative data collection led us to infer that videos did imply a mitigating effect for the adverse effects of lockdown (this case study is part of my research publications).
👎 In terms of disadvantages, I find that the main drawback is the time and resources that teachers need to invest in the creation of such videos. In order to overcome this difficulty, it is true that the internet is full of audiovisual resources that we might take profit from. They are mostly coming from informal education (dissemination, outreaching activities...), but many of them comply with main quality standards described in literature for pedagogical use.
🔈 What is your experience in these regards? Do you count on additional resources or criteria when selecting video material? Is your experience it the classroom indicating any interesting phenomenon of video effects in students' motivation or performance? Please, share in this discussion. Let's build knowledge and share our experiences to enhance our teaching activity.
📚🔍 My research in STEM education is focused on some of these key aspects. I am open to collaborate in future case studies that might complement our experience and expertise fields. Don't hesitate contacting me through my ResearchGate profile.
Thanks for sharing!
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I am teaching at a public university. Sometimes I use videos as a complementary resource in my classes.
I see, it effectively enhances the interest level of the students in their subject matters, as well as videos, creating motivation among the students towards learning. Videos attract the attention of the inattentive students in the class. Nowadays students prefer watching a video over listening to lectures or reading books.
It is possible to effectively engage the students and increase their participation through video-based learning. When they are bored, video reduces their cognitive overload. We know that the human brain can process videos many times faster than any text whether it is easy or complex.
But the uninterrupted internet facilities and good quality projectors are very important for using videos in the classes. That's why sometimes it is not possible for teachers in all academic institutions to use videos as complementary resources in classes.
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Hi ResearchGate community,
I am looking for scientific methods to evaluate student engagement levels per each lecture or few lectures (teaching modules) in two 200 and 400 level engineering courses. My goal is to measure learning outcomes at the end of each assessment module and test correlation between learning outcomes and engagement levels as a function of different teaching methods.
Question is: what are some rigorous and reproducible methods to measure student engagement during a lecture?
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This is possible, my dear sir, in the case of preparing an open questionnaire or an objective test
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As the world becomes more complex and interconnected, the importance of systems thinking is rising, with engineering being no exception to this trend. Should we as engineering educators aim to teach and train our students in systems thinking from the get-go (first year, first semester), or should we wait for later years when they're acquired more discipline-specific (electrical, mechanical, etc.) knowledge and skills? In other words, is there value in teaching systems thinking to novices, even in a basic way?
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Oleksandr Tarasov indeed, but I've heard arguments (like some have argued here) that we shouldn't teach systems thinking in the first year of engineering education, because the students don't have the required knowledge and skills to make sense of it or apply it.
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Hello,
I'm conducting a systematic review in order to understand how the educators are coping with the challenges regarding experimentation and hands-on activities in Engineering Education and the impact of this situation in learning and teaching amidst COVID-19. Until now, It seems to be that the classes only have been replaced by an online format with the accompaniment of simulators (software and virtual). Then, as Educators, How do you cope the reduction or elimination of experimentation and hands-on activities? ¿Did you implement other alternatives to address the problem with laboratories, experimentation and practice in engineering education?
Thanks in advance,
Best regards,
Jonathan
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You are welcome Jonathan Álvarez Ariza .
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We are calling for a paradigm shift in engineering education. In times of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (“4IR”), a myriad of potential changes is affecting all industrial sectors leading to increased ambiguity that makes it impossible to predict what lies ahead of us. Thus, incremental culture change in education is not an option anymore. The vast majority of engineering education and training systems, having remained mostly static and underinvested in for decades, are largely inadequate for the new 4IR labor markets. Some positive developments in changing the direction of the engineering education sector can be observed. Novel approaches of engineering education already deliver distinctive, student-centered curricular experiences within an integrated and unified educational approach. We must educate engineering students for a future whose main characteristics are volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity. Talent and skills gaps across all industries are poised to grow in the years to come. Therefore, promote an engineering curriculum that combines timeless didactic tradition, such as Socratic inquiry, project-based learning, and first-principles thinking with novel elements (e.g. student-centered active and e-learning by focusing on the case study and apprenticeship pedagogical methods) as well as a refocused engineering skillset and knowledge. These capabilities reinforce engineering students’ perceptions of the world and the subsequent decisions they make. This 4IR engineering curriculum will prepare engineering students to become curious engineers and excellent communicators better navigating increasingly complex multistakeholder ecosystems.
What are your opinions?
What are your insights?
Do you know great articles or books which cover this topic well?
Many thanks for your perspective!
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Also, Dr M.M. Bühler : The Industrial Revolution brought several important changes to the field of education by making education accessible for children of all socioeconomic backgrounds and setting laws making education a requirement. The government, for the first time in history, allocated funds to promote education in schools. See the link: https://www.mvorganizing.org/how-did-the-industrial-revolution-impact-education-in-the-united-states/
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We know that students' creativity develops when there is no fear of failure, then how we do the assessment.
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Dear are new online tools for assessments, Prof. Hacı Hasan Yolcu, for example, the H5P content:
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The isolation generated by the COVID-19 pandemic has forced most of the world's universities to choose remote or virtual classes. In the case of engineering programs and other programs where real practical experiences are required, it has been necessary to resort to increasing simulation or to the development and implementation of remote laboratories. The scarce infrastructure that exists in remote laboratories will be able to demonstrate learning effectiveness and enhance future developments that validate the training of engineers using this educational tool that makes possible the technological advances of the 21st century and thus generate a permanent change in the global educational paradigm. .
Examples:
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By using new avaliable free VLE tools such as Khan Academy Dear Prof. Edwin Francisco Forero-García
Khan Academy has several courses for engineering programs. In addition, Khan Academy can be defined as a---remote VLE laboratory---able to offer learning free tools for higher mathematics, for example.
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#Engineering_Education
Recently I have flipped my Engineering Mechanics: Dynamics class. Please follow the link below:
I have also shifted the course from a theory-based to a project-based course. Often it is a good idea to take the suggestions from those who have experience of Flipped Classroom. Please, share what makes your flipped classroom successful? What are the things you believe most essential? Also, asking for feedback on the videos.
What is missing? How to improve?
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You are very welcome. Thanks for downloading my paper and thanks for subscribing.
Unfortunately, my classes have to be taken by more than twice as many people, i.e., 35 students on average. Thus, solving problems as one big group isn‘t really working for me. I tried that last semester. I can see, however that working in small groups is a problem for some students if they (or at least the whole group) don‘t have any clue. Nevertheless, I think I will try to work in smaller groups next semester in order to gain some hands-on experience. My students have to solve problems as homework during the online part of the course. So my plan is to provide several more complex problems in class and let the individual groups decide if they want to deepen their understanding on specific homework problems they already know (and ask questions on these) or if they want to work on more complex problems, because they already understood all the homework problems. In any case I will be there as a consultant just like you seemed to have done. We will see how that works out - I will definitely report back at least in a blog-post.
Have a nice weekend,
Markus
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I'm a technical researcher in inter-discipline engineering stream. I'm highly interested in getting involved in educational initiative of engineering at methodology/pedagogy level. Would love to know/discuss various academic/non-academic options for full time career as an educationist.
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A tenure track position in the college of engineering at university will proivde opptuntu for teahcign and reserach. You can conduct research focusing on pedagogy applying it to your own teaching. Attend ASEE (American Society for Engineering Education) and FIE (Frontiers in Education) conferences which are meant for engineering educators. Collaborate with some in this field.
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Preferably in the UK or europe
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no
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STEM was the main topic at the 2019 ASTE international conference, with at least 8 posters, 27 oral presentations and 3 workshops promoting STEM classrooms, STEM instruction/teaching, STEM lessons, STEM summer camps, STEM clubs, and STEM schools without providing an operational conceptualization or definition of what STEM is. Some oral presentations advocated for disciplines integration, but the example provided were mainly "inquiry based" and "Engineering Design Process" practices which in fact did not differed from the overly used, poorly conceptualized and epistemologically incongruent hands on/minds off type of classroom activities.
Therefore, it is worth considering:
(1) Why do we call it STEM if it does not differ from practices being implemented for decades (e.g. inquiry, hands on activities)?
(2) What benefits (if any) can this STEMification mentality/trend bring to science education?
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STEM was first conceived as a collective concept by the National Science Foundation in the USA about 30 years ago out of concerns for the quality of undergraduate education , leading to the establishment of Project Kaleidoscope (Elrod, 2010). This and other American funded initiatives have tended to focus on individual teaching enhancements based on the premise that many evidence-based individual improvements will lead to a collective change. However, this has generally not worked out the way these funders originally anticipated.
American interest in STEM education increased rapidly following the publication of Friedman’s (2005) analysis that China and India were on course to overtake the USA in the global economy by surpassing their STEM educational output. Subsequently, other Western countries have followed America’s lead, such as the UK which ran a National HE STEM Programme (2013) from 2009 to 2012. STEM educational reforms are therefore mainly driven by economic rather that pedagogical concerns, leading Fairweather (2008: 6) to describe them as, “solutions in search of a problem”.
References
Elrod, S. (2010) Project Kaleidoscope 2.0: Leadership for twenty-first-century STEM education. Liberal Education, 96(4), pp. 24-33.
Fairweather, J. (2008) Linking evidence and promising practices in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) undergraduate education. Washington, DC: Board of Science Education, National Research Council, The National Academies.
Friedman, T. (2005) The world is flat: A brief history of the twenty-first century. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
National HE STEM Programme (2013) Enabling the HE sector to engage with schools, enhance curricula, support graduates and develop the workforce, http://www.hestem.ac.uk/.
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We are considering adding experiential learning in our engineering curriculum in the soph/jr years. Some of the experiential learning will be formal (classes) and others informal (professional societies, mini baha etc). We were wondering if there are literature results where the effectiveness of adding these opportunities was measured? We have done a comprehensive search and have found no direct studies. thanks for your time!
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I strongly agree in adding experiential learning in any curriculum. But first define what is experiential learning. Experiential learning is bringing knowledge into action to develop skills and attitude from what was learned. Experiential learning is learning by doing. Examples of experiential learning are laboratory works, role playing, simulation, practicum, apprenticeship, internship, on the job training, fieldwork, volunteering.
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I have data on a specific concept inventory (CI) from various cohorts. These cohorts can be categorised into group 1 with instruction type 1 and group 2 with instruction type 2. I know that the categorisation into these groups is reflected in the CI data, i.e. the performance is similar within the groups and different between the groups.
Would it be appropriate to perform a psychometric analysis on the combined data? Or should one treat both cases individually? In the latter case, the result could be that validity depends on the type of instruction.
What is the common practise? How did you choose your data?
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Analytical approach, or analytical skill, which is characterized by each person, but this remedy is varying degrees vary according to the mental capacity of the person as well as the percentage of cognitive knowledge possessed by each person in addition to that cultural role in general; analysis is the fee to collect information and detail, analysis and dismantling; Resulting from the psychological reference, or other ... with thanks
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I am about to start some independent work, without an academic advisor. The analysis I made so far seems positive. The contribution, should it work in practice, would be interesting but not astonishing.
I am asking your counseling about how would I present the final work in order to get the PhD (or DEng, or whatever) degree.
Are universities open to this kind of endeavour? Or would I be required to go through the complete process (credits, advisor, etc)?
Another concern of mine is how and where I can publish the paper when I am not affiliated to a particular academic institution?
Thank you very much in advance for any assistance.
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In Norway, there exists two doctoral degrees: the regular PhD degree and the degree of Dr. Philos. (doctor philosophiae). The last mentioned, the Dr.Philos. degree in Norway may be conferred on graduates who have qualified for a doctoral degree on their own, without formal research training. The candidates write the thesis without supervision and have no connection with the university as a doctoral candidate until a faculty has approved their application for admission to the Dr. Philos. examination. The two doctoral degrees are in Norway considered being of equal academic value.
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And how to define Engineering Culture ?
Do "mentality" and "mindset" differ from each other? And what features influence Culture/Nature of Engineering Higher Education?
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So, complementing Isam's answer: to find innovative solutions to environmental challenges ahead of us, we need an Engineering Education that is transformative, dynamic, and transdisciplinary. In this sense, we need a mindset that enables growth, creativity (thinking outside the box) and interconnectivity with others, so that a new mentality can emerge at individual and social levels.
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Hi everybody,
I am studying by myself this method and I have very big doubts about this method and its application to the BSIM model.
I came across with this method not too long ago when I read a couple of papers. Some papers led me to other references including two from prof. Vittoz and Enz, but I must confess that at some point the mathematical treatment started to overtake me and I started to look at their papers in the diagonal.
Although it is a topic that I like very much, because it offers a big insight into semiconductor physics and the way the transistors are modelled, it is very time-consuming. Plus, I don't know to which extent it is necessary to know all this theory to use the method gm/id which is the main objective. I am not an expert in this topic so I apologise for any mistake.
One of the references in those papers referenced to Prof. D. Binkley's book, which I decided to buy and since then I have been focusing my reading on chapter 2 and 3. I bought it because I wanted to know in more detail where all those concepts like inversion coefficient, technology current, gm/id method and so on came from. Plus, the book would explain in more detail all the concepts when compared to some papers.
Since then I have been learning new things and it turns out that this book was a very good investment. However, my brain has been flooded with doubts.
Because I don't know anyone that has any knowledge about this method (prof. Binkley), I thought in posting this message in this community in the hope someone could help me clarify some doubts.
That said, I would like to know if is there someone that hs used David Binkley approach to design circuits using the BSIM model? Even if you haven't used this method with the BSIM model but with EKV I would like to hear from you has well.
Best regards,
Carlos
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Check this paper for step-by-step procedure to design an OTA.
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We say that our students should have the capability to innovate once they graduate. At the same time companies seek talented and innovative graduates. So to what extent should industry (external forces) drive new learning and to what extent should (internal forces) new technology and research wisdom guide the curricula that address tomorrow's breakthroughs?
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Speaking from a chemical engineering perspective (spread out to chemistry and engineering) I think that creativity is claimed vastly more than it is delivered, and that innovation is rare, and largely should not be encouraged.
An important duty of the engineer is to be safe. Thus using proven techniques, materials and methods of design (especially design standards) means that the engineer is not relying on their own limited knowledge and experience, but that of others, generally largely experts in the field.
Something innovative is by definition untried and not well understood (though the innovators may kid themselves they do). Companies and individuals should only do so when they are sure they can cope with failure. Individual inventors commonly fail many times for every success. Many small and innovative companies go out of business for every successful rise you read about.
In chemical engineering degrees we run design projects as the capstone of the degree courses. We can encourage students to attempt a new process or market, safe in the knowledge that the plant will not actually built, so any errors of safe design or economic evaluation will not have consequences other than the loss of a few marks.
The fundamental safety feature of engineering is getting the sums right, and this should be the service that universities can deliver to industry, along with an awareness of some proven technology and techniques. The average graduate is not expected to come up with something totally new, and in my personal experience companies are very wary of novelty.
Many papers I have seen claiming to teach creativity in engineering give examples of the occasional group where one bright student (possibly with the help of a relative in the field) has come up with what sounds like a good idea, but offer no evidence of getting all graduates to produce even one good idea. Others talk about taking a holistic view. This I am happy with. We can teach ways to explore more options and consider wider aspects, which will sometimes suggest a different way of going about things. The example I give is this:
A factory is being doubled in size, so the effluent treatment is also being doubled, using the same design as before at a cost of say £5 million. Consider if you could spend some of that sum to improve the process to produce less effluent and/or to improve the current effluent plant.
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If no, what is the difference between capacitance type transmitter and intrinsically safety type transmitter?
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Just a quick search on the internet seems to yield some possible solutions. Look at
The first link is to an instrument from the SOR company. I've not used this product, but I've used other products from that company, with good results.
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This question might seem personal and of course, it is, but many of my friends are facing this problem.
I am a sophomore student and I want to do research in the field of electrical and electronic engineering. I am not quite sure about the specific field but I am finding interest in power electronics, embedded circuit and integrated circuits. But I want to know why should I be doing higher studies and research in these fields? Can somebody please tell me the future aspects of these branches? It would be very helpful for us.
Thank you in advance.
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It is extremely pleasant to see that students now have started becoming concerned about what exactly their interest in EE is ! There are two questions in your message:
i) Why should one go for higher studies/research in his/her area of interest? Advancement in Technology is a never-ending process particularly from applications point of view. So, we see a rapid change in the way how technology is making our life easier. All this fruits are as a result of envisaging and realizing novel solutions. So, to summarize:
Higher education -> (should lead to) Enhancing research expertise -> (which should ultimately map to) -> Using Technology for human welfare
ii) Future aspects of these (mentioned) branches?                                                  IMHO, future of ANY (and EVERY) branch is bright iff we have genuine interest in that particular branch. Why? Because, if I have original interest in a particular domain, I would be able to think beyond constraints. The more interest I have in an area, the broader the horizon is. Just my thoughts.
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My research work is on Guided Enquiry Based Learning (GEBL) approach towards better understanding of Power Electronics concepts and principles. I would like to get to know researchers working in a similar field or who have conducted similar studies earlier, who is willing to share/discuss ideas to help each others research. I am in the process of developing instruments for the research. Regards
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A very interesting topic indeed. Power electronics is rich in possibilities of implementing GEBL at higher levels. Some pointers based on Industry experience of dc drives for Traction, Electrolysis plants, and Traction (thyristor Control) and Invertor IM controls is suggested below. Hope it helps.
1. Basic critical Knowledge needed in Cicuit analysis,Control Systems, Universal Theory of Machines ( (See a beautiful Text by C,V. Jones. Excellent modeling in Electromechanical Energy Conversion By G.Slemon  text . Electronics, Communication Protocols, Linear Algebra, DSP and  simulators like Pspice.
2. There are many pitfalls in practical applications which can be usefully seen and solved in Pspice simulations. A popular error for newbies is to see conduction beyond 180 deg in a simple L R load sourced from a sinusoid  voltage.  Shoot throughs in switching circuits (use of snubbers) is another important phenomena.
3. One finding is many engineers find it difficult to understand Power Electronics mainly because they do not try to draw the different modes of operation. Here Pspice would be a very useful tool.
4. it is a real challenge to collect explorative questions .It should aid in intuitive understanding . It should  not cause students to be lost in the "woods of complicated maths and theory in cicuits and controls" .
5. Use of interactive  applets with possibility of, say, simulating drives for a paper mill for instance, would be welcome.
6. Another huge challenge is to bring smart,Power management, Nano science Robotics,and AI into the curriculum.
Good Luck
Cheers
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While teaching op-amp circuits, which is the best way to explain the working of op-amp? I think the nullor model is useful.
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For my opinion, these artificial constructs like nullor, norator etc. do not help at all. 
According to my experience in teaching analog electronics (and that is the question!) , there are two basic areas which are necessary to (a) analyse and (b) design operational amplifier based circuits:
(1) Amplifier technics (bias point, small-signal begaviour);
(2) Negative feedback (advantages, disadvantages, consequences).
So - finally, where is the need for an abstract model?
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In cochlear implant products, Class D power amplifier is a really good option to use, I think class E power amplifier can be used too, but I am not sure that in cochlear implant products which of these amplifiers is used.
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 Thank you so much 
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When multi-DOF systems with arbitrary damping are modeled using the state-space method, then Laplace-transform of the state equations results into an eigen problem. In general the eigenvalues and vectors are complex. The IP (eigenvalue) represents the damped natural frequency.
In case of undamped systems the eigenvalues are complex with RP=0. But mode shapes are real and represents relation between various motion variables, when system vibrates with corresponding natural frequency.
I am interested in understanding the physical interpretation of complex mode shapes (complex eigenvectors).
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Hi,
complex vibration modes arise whenever non-proportional damping occurs. Such is the case of mechanical systems, supported by assemblies of springs and dashpots, and also of civil engineering structures, contrary to what is commonly thought.
Such complex modes are responsible for the change of position of the "nodes" (modal configuration points with zero amplitude) that can be seen in many animated mode shapes.
I have prepared two notebooks (links below) to show the influence of these complex modes both in dynamic equilibrium and in state-space formulation that help you to visualize this phenomena.
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We are looking for good case studies of this method being used for detection of slums or informal settlements
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Also, since you may be working on slums, some the references in this paper may be of benefit. 
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I am working on optimization of transformer parameters and need expert's advice on this one specifically please guide me.My team has introductory level experience on this FEMM tool.We  need to present simulations for any type of transformer modification.
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Dear Pranav Vyas,
FEMM is a free software which is able to do many types of simulations as it can be controled by LUA scripts. Have a look at the attached files, I have used the script file to show the torque evolution of a PM motor. Unfortunatly, I have no script about transformers. Keep in mind that any ordres which are provided by the icons can be achieved with a LUA script. LUA script is not limited to FEMM and you have to download the LUA script documentation associated to FEMM and also the general information about LUA script.
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Doing research on academic (student) flow (Throughput) at universities in engineering discipline. I am doing research on models that will help to improve the flow and that will help to minimize the current constraints of which the university will have control over.
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Thinking like an engineer - it is a book which can help to understand engineering profession.
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What is your opinion about QoS enhancement in cognitive networks?
In which fields and in what ways is it best to use QoS enhancement in cognitive networks (forecasting traffic)?
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 My opinion about QoS enhancement in cognitive networks is confiability and loss probabitity.
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Thanks in advanced 
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In Researcher , what characteristics do you think the main ?
My answer to this question is same as my answer found in this RG link i.e. Passion & Perseverance.  Wishing you all the best.
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I would like to apply those methods in Engineering Education (Vocational Education)
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Dear Mbei Lissouck
In my opinion every modern teaching methods, can be helpful. Please find enclosed an interesting article as PDF file. I can recommend an interesting book that covers your area of interest.
Caroline Baillie and Ivan Moore (ed.) (2004) Effective Learning and Teaching in Engineering, London, New York, RoutledgeFalmer.
If you get one you will not go wrong.
Best regards,
Andrija.
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confused with Z ,S domain and K domain
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The Beladel answer is okay and very satisfactory, but i want to stress some important points concerning this question and its answer.
The question is a very interesting one and is useful for the researcher. It is about the the understanding of most important tools for signal ans systems analysis and synthesis.
The systems operates in time domain and therefore its performance is analysed and described in time domain by means of differential equations. The system of equations describing the system is called the mathematical model of the system. It is challenging to solve the system of equations in the time domain. La Place invented a tool to transform the differential equations into algebraic equations provided that equations are linear. It is his La place transformation. Where a function f(t) is transformed into F(S) a function in the complex frequency domain S where the differentiation of f(t) is just a multiplication of  F(S) by S where the integration is a division by  S in the S domain. So, the invention of the S-domain has simplifies the system and signal analysis very much. 
The signals and systems can be described also in the frequency domain. The frequency domain is a special domain of the la Place domain by formally making S= jw  where j is the imaginary and w is the frequency. Now, with this substitution, one gets the Fourier transform. As a co sequence of this transform one can can get the frequency content of any function f(t). This means that such functions can be analysed to its frequency components  or tones. Conversely functions cab be constructed from their frequency components.The concept of the bandwidth is the consequence of such signal description. Concerning the system description one obtained the amplitude frequency response and phase response. Which is equivalent to the time domain description but easy to measure and analyse suing harmonic signals inform of sine and cosines.
This concerns the continuous time descriptions. For discrete time functions and systems one has the Z-domain. The z domain is the discrete S domain where by definition Z= exp S Ts with Ts is the sampling time. It is also a special domain of the S-domain. Also the discrete time functions and systems can be easily mathematically described and synthesized in the Z-domain exactly like the S-domain for continuous time systems and signals.
In my post i wished to underline the usefulness of such tools for the function ans systems descriptions. The analysis of linear systems became much easier. Thank you La Place. Than you Fourier.
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Visual thinking helps engineers to reason technical problems as well as ideate design solutions. Schemes and sketches are fully applies by engineers for their work, in adición, visual thinking is linked to creativity. 
Current engineering educations includes CAD Geometry into engineering graphics subjects, but traditional sketching is displaced, meaning a decrease on spatial abilities and so visual thinking skills. Despite creative aspects are considered in for engineering educations, visual thinking is not. What do you think? What is your experience as educators/students?
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I have taught problem solving, and tell the students that expressing a problem visually on paper is often a very helpful step.  Some research showed that for groups who were given the same problem, the ones who were told to draw it first came to an answer much more quickly than those who were not.  (Can't give the reference now.)
One of the difficulties is that students no longer write or draw.  The physical act of carrying this out helps memory.  In addition if the teacher draws something on the blackboard and the students copy it, they see how to construct it and are less likely to make mistakes by putting lines in the wrong places.  I find students get standard engineering symbols wrong because they copy without understanding.  This is also relevant to languages such as Chinese and Japanese, where the order of constructing the word is important.
I would say the educators have in general forgotten this.
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As creativity depends on many factors and in great manner on individual aspects, do you think that the approach at engineering education for creativity shall be oriented not to focus on use specific creative methods, proven as more suitable to engineering practice, but to let engineering students to apply which they feel more effective?
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Hi Alfonso,
your work is pretty impressive. I am currently an NSF Fellow in Mississippi. As part of being a PhD fellow, I am required to teach high school students for approximately 5-7 hours per week. I believe in teaching students transferable skills that make them think and use skills they have acquired along their educational journey. For example, I taught a modern physics lab on the  polarization and chirality of sugar water. Students had to work in teams to find an effective way to design a homemade polarimeter using the limited equipment provided (lamp, poster, sugar, water, stand, clamps, beakers and polarizing films). Post the setup of their polarimeter, they then had to calculate the rotational angle as a function of sugar water concentration in order to understand the impact of the concentration on the rotational angle of the molecules in sugar water. It sounds difficult, but trust me...it was a piece of cake once they figured out the best design within the hour and 30 minutes allowed. I then asked them to utilize excel (which can be a powerful tool for students who get it early on). In excel, students were forced to find a model fit to their data and were required to explain the meaning of the slope of the graph. They were then asked to perform an error analysis on their data to gain an understanding on where they could have went wrong.This is turn was forcing them to become applied scientists and engineers in my book. They took a somewhat hazy topic and turned it into a transferable skill for many more problems they will face in the future. This is key for producing many of today's future STEM leaders.
I do believe that today's students should be forced to do things in excel post math, science and engineering lectures in order to help them grasp concepts immediately and in turn this will provide them with transferable skills in which they will have gained forever.  For example, many of us have taken introductory calculus as scientists and engineers, however how many of us can say that we can find the area under an energy curve by creating Riemann sums in excel to do them for us. Some students in physics hate me in the beginning but love me in the end for forcing them to move away from the PASCO software which does all of the hidden calculations for them. But in the end they truly learn how the math is used to give meaning to a physical phenomena via excel and maple.
I hope to someday write papers on topics like this and examine the retention of such effects on student populations within STEM majors.  
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I mean some approaches, main principles. Thanks
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Hi
           The systematic or hirarchical formation of the content really helps the students to remember the content in the course. That hirarchy should show the branches of the prequisite material and out come (the objective to that course).. Keep tracing that hirarchy in every lecture.
thanks
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I needed your support to perform a survey study for both engineering students and educators about visual thinking, skecthing and engineering education.
If you spare a few minutes to fill in this questionnaire I shall appreciate:
Many Thanks
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Yes, it does help absolutely. Sketching is helpful in illustrating the subject matter to the audience well through some insight into the topic under discussion. Students are more engaged through well drawn sketching. The objective of discussion grasped  quickly through well drawn sketching.
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My focus is on Engineering Education. 
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Hi,
It's really a complex question
Why a teacher will want to develop a digital learning material? And if he is motivated to do it, does he have the required competencies for this task?
For the students’ side, how can we maintain their motivation? Is the content adapted to each of them? How can we control cheating …etc   
Regards
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Which approach do yo feel more effective to get engineering undergraduates become more creative: by specific creatitivy methods teaching, or applying creatitivy on engineerign courses or activities, such as Problem-based Learning?
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I can only answer this from personal experience as I have only passing knowledge of the literature. 
I think teaching creativity techniques can help if they are seen as directly relevant to the engineering task and not something on the side e.g. tinkering over brainstorming. 
Moreover working on a 'creativity culture' is key. Which engineers do you set as an example and what do you tell about them? Does formative and summative feedback centralize creative problem solving? etc. I guess you would call this an implicit approach although much can be done by looking at what extent creativity is explicitly valued in the rest of the program.
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Literature is filled with the advantages of Problem / Project based Learning (PBL) approaches and how these approaches have been implemented. Did an academic engineering program / course ever quit PBL? What were the reasons? How did students perceive a change from PBL back to traditional teaching and learning?
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To this discussion, I would add the value of discovery-based learning which has some of the same benefits of PBL without quite as much overhead. DBL uses leading questions and more interaction between students and teacher than traditional lecture. This facilitates the students "discovering" the engineering principles rather than simply being given them.
DBL requires a shift for an engineering faculty member who may be more inclined to traditional lecture style classes or problem solving sessions and requires slightly different preparation. DBL can scale much more easily than PBL, though, and still puts the engineering knowledge in broader context similar to PBL.
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I'm interested in making more use of technology in education and one recent idea is to create an assignment requiring students to generate learning tools such as short instructional videos, explanations of problem solutions, analogies or metaphors for course topics. These would be assigned early in the course so students could think about options but would not be due until the end of the course as part of the course review. After vetting by the instructor(s), these learning tools would then be made available to the rest of the students in the course to use in their review for final exams. From an initial literature review, it is clear that this is not a new idea, so I'm interested in hearing more about your experiences with such a concept - the good, the bad, and the ugly!  Thanks!
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Hello,
there is some research on "student-generated content" which includes issues you are interested in. 
In one of my subjects students create interview transcripts with an imaginary client and videos representing bits of interviews. The best pieces I collect to reuse in other subject where similar case studies are applicable (e.g. project management and systems analysis and design). I showed my student how to use goanimate.com and powtoon.com. But there are other video tools on the Internet that have intuitive interface.
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I am conducting an action research in my own organization on the appropriation of electronic portfolio as an individual learning environment to capture, document, archive, select and make reflections on artifacts. There are various issues in this research and I would love to share mine with those who are doing the same thing.
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I am now working on e-portfolio design principles framework/model focussed on social sciences and humanities context. Maybe we can share the idea...
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I am interesting to measure experience gained by students after performing laboratory classes. How can I measure these things?
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As a bachelors student I can tell you with great confidence that the real measure of student's learning would be in troubleshooting test environment based on the laboratory classes. 
One other interesting way to measure the experience would be to keep the objective same while changing the apparatus. In this method the choice of components given should be infered with previously used components. 
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Cognitive psychology can be seen as the processes by which our sensory inputs are transformed, reduced, elaborated, stored, recovered and used. In short, cognition can be defined as the acquisition of knowledge. As such, difficult concepts and design should be taught in light of the findings of  cognitive psychology. For example, digital map design should be embedded in how we consume the spatial information. Cognitive psychology may provide a strong framework for a new way to explain the engineering topics and others such as computer science. In fact, it can be integrated to all walks of life that are central to mankind. 
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I definitely agree.  The engineers and computer scientists are hungry for accessible information about cognitive psychology.
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Interested in refining assessment of college readiness and development of remedial programs to decrease first year drop out
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Some of the most important reasons for failure are nothing to do with the syllabus.  In particular a student who feels lonely is disadvantaged compared with those who are bonded with some class mates.  This can happen if they arrive late,  are shy, living away from other students, or have a different cultural background.
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Internships Learnerships trades & ABET literacy & numeracy. Skills development programmes leading to qualifications take time, but the construction sector is characterised by short term contracts and sub-contracting - how is this being reconciled?
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You can get the similar or apropriate answer by searching the keyword in the GOOGLE SCHOLAR page. Usually you will get the first paper similar to your keyword.
From my experience, this way will help you a lot.
If you still have a problem, do not hasitate to let me know.
Kind regards, Prof Dr ZOL BAHRI
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We are working in the field of higher education in engineering. We have found that students with industrial background, have exciting ways to integrate various type of knowledge, e.g tacit, practical, network, theoretical knowledge. We are working on several scientific papers in the field. Is there researchers with same interests and/or experience within the field?
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I would suggest to have a look at:
Ihsen, Susanne / Schneider, Wolfram / Wallhoff, Frank / Blume, Jürgen (2011). Raising interest of pupils in Engineering Education through Problem Based Learning. International Journal of Engineering Education, Special Issue: Learning through play in Engineering Education Volume 27, No. 4, 789-794. 
and
Ihsen, Susanne / Hantschel, Victoria / Schneider, Wolfram (2010). PBL at Technische Universität München - Practical Examples with Students and Pupils. Visions, Challenges and Stragegies for Problems Based Learning International Conference 04.06. May 2010.
as a starting point on problem based learning approaches in engineering education. Maybe that's something to pursuit?
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I'm producing a review paper on mapping the linkages between 3D printing and engineering education. Any recommendations of papers / domains to examine would be very welcome. 
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For the impact of 3D printing on engineering educational aspects, you may find the following case study interesting.
DOI: 10.1109/IEDEC.2014.6784673
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Recently 3d printing has captured a lot of attention. There seems to be many
application possibilities. I was wondering how a simple interesting project or lab exercise could be introduced at u.g level in windows 7 using open source software. I would welcome any open downloadable articles on this topic.
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For teaching 3d printing demo project idea is good. Starting just try to fabricate a block or a bottle or any other daily life object, I think this will help in developing interest among the students.
For evaluation point of view projects like modeling of scaled down automobile and fabricating it or model  a gear/pulley/grain train  can be given
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Please see attached text document.
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@Narasim Ramesh
Arduino with corresponding shield modules could be suitable for initial activities related to acquiring of specific knowledge and skills. In the future - if there will be specific requirements for computing resources and power consumption, Arduino could be outperformed by other platforms: https://www.researchgate.net/post/Which_are_the_most_widely_used_motes
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I am leading a curriculum in manufacturing engineering. Each year I ask for 100 students (our optimal capacity) and receive between 160 and 250 students. As our curriculum is unique in the country, I cannot reject some of them. The curriculum is highly practical with about 30% of labs. How to deal with this huge number of students without lowering the quality of teaching?
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As far as I can tell, you already have a good idea as to the students you would like to graduate, although this has not been formulated explicitly.  The difficulty seems to lie in evaluation.  I know I would prefer a student who knows nothing except how to learn to a student who has memorized all the books and understands nothing.  Insight, perspective and persistence seem most important, but test grades (the most easily available data) do not seem to correlate very well with these.  It is a difficult problem!
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I would like to know how the teaching, learning process can be improved in Engineering in the context of industrial revolution.
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The most important factor by far is that the engineering instructor have an understanding of how engineering is practiced in industry.  If the instructor does not have direct experience in the actual practice of engineering (i.e., working for a significant period in a responsible industrial position), there are alternative means for gaining the crucial insights  --  e.g., Summer internships, partnering with a current industrial practitioner, etc.  As to method in the university, my experience (29 years in teaching, 25 years in practice) strongly indicates that project-based learning is the best method.  Engineers working in industry do so through projects, which are by definition multi-faceted and open-ended.  Lots of decent models around for project-based learning or discovery-learning.
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Some universities require field training courses for all majors. While companies do take trainees, they do not always have the time or resources to train them well. Is field training needed in all majors? What can be done to improve student training?
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@Nasser, field training courses are very useful and they are obligation for majors due to Bologna system of education in my country! Very often, the programs for field training courses have been done and often changed jointly, by companies as well as by Universities. The impact of companies is high, we do create people to work in these companies! The most of demands that comes from Companies are built in training programs! "Most European countries now face the common challenge of
providing all future employees with the knowledge and skills they will need in a knowledge-based economy, with its emphasis on flexibility, adaptability and competence." Fine article is attached!
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Until now, I reviewed many papers which talked about the security of chaos based ciphers, but until now I could not find the commercial use for chaotic based ciphers. Maybe it is currently still being researched?
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I am not aware whether Chaotic Security has been introduced in Commercial Applications.Probably it is introduced in Defence Applications. Vide item 1.
The application of it in Communication and Image Transmission are widely reported.
The following references, to mention a few are illustrative of its use.
Secure Image Ciphering based on the Mathematics of Chaos
Multi-Sensor Exploitation Branch
Information and Intelligence Exploitation Division
Information Directorate
Air Force Research Laboratory
Investigators; � Dr. Jiri Fridrich, Principal Investigator, SUNY Binghamton
� Mr. Richard Simard,Multi-Sensor Exploitation Branch, AFRL
Secure Image Ciphering based on the Mathematics of Chaos. Need for Secure and Efficient Use of Available Transmission Media Between Fixed and Deployed Locations to Transfer Time-Sensitive Data for Military & Commercial Applications.
Security Analysis of A Chaos-based Image Encryption Algorithm
Shiguo Lian, Jinsheng Sun, Zhiquan Wang
Department of Automation, Nanjing University of Science and Technology
Nanjing, Jiangsu 210094, P.R China
Information Security using Genetic Algorithm and Chaos
Anil Kumar, M. K. Ghose
Sikkim Manipal Institute of Technology, Sikkim (INDIA)
In this paper the Authors have proposed a new approach of genetic algorithms (GA) with pseudorandom sequence to encrypt data stream.
The feature of such an approach includes high data security and high feasibility for easy integration with commercial multimedia transmission applications. The experimental results of the proposed technique confirm that high throughput rate needed for real time data protection is achieved.
This total way of transferring secret information is highly safe and reliable. The simulation results have indicated that the encryption results are completely chaotic by the sense of sight,very sensitive to the parameter fluctuation.
In the future work, they are planning to design a sophisticated hardware based on this technique which will be targeted to use in highly secure multimedia data transmission applications.
P.S.
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Many issues that affect students are discussed by faculty members in many cases without any input from students. In many cases students can make valuable contributions. One way to guarantee students’ input is to include them in the decision making process by having student representatives in university governance bodies.
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Dear Nasser, I agree with Janina, we do have at Copernicus University chosen students as representative on faculty boards. They are participating and voting during monthly meetings. There are also students as representatives on the university level, participating in meetings of the Senate of NCU.
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I wish to to know the understanding, knowledge and satisfaction levels of students after a teacher has taught a class. At the end of the semester, a teacher should get feedback which provides insight into how to modify their approach so that students get the maximum from their teaching efforts. After all, this is the the sole aim of education.
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Vikas I suggest you might look at these papers:
Effects of Course and instructor charateristics on student evaluation of teaching across a college of engineering M.Johnson, A. Narayanam & W. Sawaya. JEE 2013
Factors affesting students exoerience and satisfaction about teaching quality in engineering RA Calvo, L. Markauskaite & k. Trigwell AJEE 2010.
The Validity of student evaluation of teaching in higher education: Love me, love my lectures? M. Shevlin, P. Banyard, M.Davies & M. Griffiths . ASEHE 2000.
A performance indicator of teaching quality in higher education: The course exoerience questionnaire. P. Ramsden SHE 1991
I am happy to email PDF's if you cannot find these on line
Mark
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Our research group is looking at the effectiveness of the professional ethics component/content in the current engineering programmes. We are looking at the possibility of developing an integrated curriculum to produce better graduates.
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Hello ,
The philosopher Socrates said that we have to persuade old and young to care for the soul and virtue . We can build a building or a bridge within the limits of minimum security requirements and standards required , save using inferior materials ( l0l 'm not an engineer so excuse me examples of child ) . Maybe this kind of ethical dilemma can be used in discussions with students or case studies .
Socrates knew that ethics requires a different type of learning . And universal human values ​​such as ethics are not acquired by mere transmission of information or knowledge . Neither is a practical thing that can be gained by training, but must be "born " within each human being from solid social principles .
Ethical principles are internalized by individuals, not only seized . There is a saying that the best way to teach is by example .
But how to "teach " ethics in a corrupt society that destroys the planet and kills every day in war spending thousands of dollars on weapons and leaving millions of people starving around the world ?
What do we gain being ethical ? This is also a good issue to discuss with students .
It is certainly a breakthrough gentlemen wish that in the course of you . I think however , that ethics , discussion can be extended even beyond the practice of engineering and social role each of us can and should play in society in which we live . What kind of business we want to be ? What kind of business should we be? What kind of person can and should be ? What kind of values ​​we can cultivate in ourselves and the society we live in ?
Maybe a discipline case study of ethical dilemmas in the profession of engineer could be part of the curriculum .
Congratulations on your initiative.
That's what occurred to me at that time .
Let's talk ...
Regards,
S.
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How can highly-rated departments remain competitive?
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@Yorgos, this is an important issue that I am faced to in Serbia! Money shortage as elsewhere, the law forbids the engagement of retired professors. Private Universities are not faced to that problem as State Universities. Resorting to breaking the law, and the case that subjects taught by retired professor are shared among the younger professors. This reduces the quality of education! The solution is state intervention over budget if the government realizes the importance of the problem!
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Increasing the use of social sustainability in the decision-making process of construction projects requires that it be defined such that it can be evaluated objectively.
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Social Sustainability Considerations during Planning and Design: Framework of Processes for Construction Projects in Journal of Construction Engineering and Management Volume 139, Issue 1 (January 2013) by Rodolfo Valdes-Vasquez, Ph.D., Aff.M.ASCE1; and Leidy E. Klotz, Ph.D., M.ASCE2.
This article will provide you with a tool for the social sustainability in construction projects.
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Should I do a Masters in Industrial Engineering? I know it's pretty hard to get in with a non-engineering undergraduate degree. I have done my research on IE and to me it would have been the perfect major. I started out as an Architect major back in CC and somehow ended up in economics. What I like about IE is the mix of science/engineering and management. Any suggestions?
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In few words, If you want to continue your higher education in Industrial Engineering, suggest you go in the domain of Engineering Economics and Finance. What the other colleagues have said is right as well, you need to work on your prerequisites. I would suggest focusing on Applied Statistics and Optimization.
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Currently, engineering students are evaluated mainly through written exams. The total number of students is too high to have individual attention if we try to evaluate them to individual exercises. How could we grade the students effectively?
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Certainly group projects are a good way, especially when they are taken in different ways, like lab session reports, seminars and research projects. If you propose interdisciplinary projects, involving a couple subjects (or courses), you can evaluate how the student is learning each of them and how to apply them simultaneously in the same project or challenge.
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While taking exams of Engineering/Technical students, which method will be suitable? Either Descriptive Quiestions or Multi Choice questions?
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One interesting and effective testing strategy is to give a multiple choice question and follow with a text question asking the student to justify or describe the process of selecting their answer to the preceding multiple choice question. This provides good insight into why students get the wrong answer and can suggest opportunities for re-teaching and/or remediation.
A variation on this is provide choices that are all "correct" but different and have students justify their selection in the text question. This often produces really interesting and thoughtful answers.
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Obviously, it is possible to suggest research articles and foster group discussions. Conducting interviews and some lab activities are among the popular ones.
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As Rogelio says, make them feel like they're part of the team - not hired help doing grunt work (though it might be grunt work that they are actually doing). If they perceive that they are doing something of value, then they will generally respond in kind. Depending on the size of the team, definitely a mention in any presentation made about the work at a conference.
As for your how many, or for how long question - one would assume that if it was done with an Independent Study course, then you could get them for a semester. If you could convince them of the benefit of doing it outside of classwork, you might be able to get them for a full year (or more), but expectations would have be lowered on what they produced - just because of the time constraints of their classwork.
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I am currently developing a 14-week course for computer science undergraduate students that focuses more on the application of control systems and the design and implementation of simple controllers using microcontrollers. The ability to simulate such controllers using Matlab is thought to be essential as well. Can you recommend the core topics needed in order to develop such course? Assumptions are that students have basic knowledge on 1) computer science and engineering mathematics; 2) basics on signals and systems, and 3) basics on microcontroller system design.
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We had a 21 day workshop on embedded control systems at our company for a group of students who had finished 2 years of engineering. They learnt sensors, filters, PID controller tuning and did a hands on Matlab/Simulink, Labview, and aurdino boards. They enjoyed it and learnt a few things. As an exercise I had given them a sealed plant model. They had to analyze and design a controller for this.
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Massive open online courses (MOOCs) are a big topic these days on university campuses. There appears to be a divide in support of MOOCs and against MOOCs. What are your thoughts about integrating MOOCs into your institution?
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There's one piece of data from my university that I haven't seen in any discussion about MOOC's yet.
Our university has one course with about 11 sections for first-year students. The order that the sections fill is 1) Monday-Friday sections, 2) Saturday and Sunday sections, 3) the on-line section. The on-line section is even less popular that the weekend sections. Students have voted with their feet -- they want a traditional learning environment...at least for first year.
For upper level courses (after students have developed university-level learning skills?), on-line courses have more popularity. Thus, I see MOOCs adding value to the mix of university offerings, but that there is still value to the traditional campus environment -- especially for younger/newer students.
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For me STEM activities are fun, but what are the best ways to persuade school students this is true?
Article Junkbots
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Personally, I don't worry about making it fun, depending on how you define fun. I have spent a lot of time making it (science) interesting/thoughtful/creative/argumentative/valuable/'normal'/'real life' eg mechanics/useful etc. In other words, I try to design curriculum that inspires new ideas that need following up by the students. If they have ideas they want to followup, then they are hooked, but I don't aim for fun, though I can be funny. Pleasure might be a better word to use.
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I teach the undergrad electromagnetic fields and waves course during the Spring semester. Presently we have a course project wherein the cadets (students) write a Finite Difference Equation (FDE) simulation of a bounded solution of the Laplace equation. Although this is a good exercise, I have found that there is a lot of cross-talk between cadets who took the course previously and those in it now. Please suggest a Matlab-based FTDT, FDE, or similar iterative solution that is easy to write (less than say 30 lines if written elegantly) but is illustrative of the utility of numerical methods for solving e-mag problems. I have attached a copy of my project specification sheet from last year to help you understand where I am coming from. I do not teach numerical methods during the course except for the project. The EEs are generally familiar with Matlab from previous courses.
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John, the book starts with 1D and continues with 2D and 3D simulations. It covers PML boundary conditions and Fourier transform to generate frequency domain signal as well.
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Please provide your thoughts on open access journals and publishing in these types of journals.
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I personally consider publishing on journals a very old (but still necessary) way of getting reputation and then rewards in terms of career advancements. Open or not open. Why not sharing everything on the web, building up our research together, without any Intellectual Property protection, just having in mind one aim: scientific and technological progress. Still utopic nowadays?
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Sometimes it is really hard to decide what type of exam reflects students' conceptual knowledge best. From one point of view, in-class exams assess students' ability to think in fast and efficient way; on the other hand, take home exams can reveal deeper understanding of the topic through more sophisticated problems. What is your experience in this area?
Thanks!
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One needs a balance. In-class tests ensure that the students have done the work themselves, and mimics the practice in the profession where the engineer has to quickly make on-site, logical decisions. The questions can be framed to probe understanding of the principles.
Take-home projects with little limits on time and resources simulate deeper, creative professional practice by doing a complete project, given most resources. The students have to demonstrate their understanding of the system.
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I am teaching 2nd order non linear differential equations for chemical engineering students. Can one help to get more solved problems on 2nd order nonlinear differential equations.
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What aspect of nonlinear equations do you want to cover? In the US it is rare that we impose nonlinear ODEs onto our UG chem eng students. The analytically techniques such as perturbation methods , power series expansion, complex transformation methods would overwhelm them. In reaction engineering classes, students get a taste of systems with multiple steady states, and perhaps a bit of linear stability theory. But these topics including bifurcation theory are topics normally covered at the graduate level. Of course with software such as MatLab and Mathematica it is not difficult to get students to solve nonlinear ODEs, but one has to be careful as the output may be beyond their mathematical understanding, e.g. Hopf bifurcations, Floquet theory, quasi-periodic solutions, imperfect bifurcations, etc.
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I have extracted these questions from the discussions (leaded by Lutz von Wangenheim) about the Barkhausen criterion, RC oscillators and phase shift in RC circuits where we tried to answer the question, "How do sine oscillations arise in RC oscillators?":
I have stated several times that we can find the answer of this question in the time domain by following the sine "movement" of the output voltage between the supply rails. I suggest to do it here by investigating the structure and the operation of the ubiquitous Wien bridge oscillator. Let's begin with the structure; here are my speculations:
To realize this exotic circuit solution, we have "to see the forest for the trees":), i.e. to group the particular elements in well-known functional blocks. Thus, we may first group the two resistors Rf, Rb and the op-amp U1 (see the attached picture below) into a low-gain (≈ 3) single-ended nonlinear amplifier (the classic non-inverting op-amp amplifier) with a Wien network (R1 = R2, C1 = C2) connected in the positive feedback loop. Rb (a bulb) self heats and reduces the amplifier gain until the point is reached that there is just enough (maybe, 3?) gain to sustain the sine oscillations without reaching the saturation point of the amplifier. So, from this viewpoint, the Wien bridge oscillator is considered as two connected in a loop devices - a non-inverting amplifier and a Wien network (a non-inverting amplifier with a Wien network positive feedback).
Then, we may group (in a little more exotic way) the non-inverting amplifier above with the upper part (R2, C2) of the Wien network into a current-driven negative impedance circuit (INIC). Its impedance is roughly equal to the "positive" impedance of the lower part (R1, C1) so that the two opposite impedances roughly neutralize each other at the equilibrium point.
The next powerful idea is to see the whole Wien bridge circuit (Rf, Rb, R1, C1, R2, C2) and to consider the Wien bridge oscillator as a combination of an op-amp and a Wien bridge connected in the positive feedback loop between the op-amp output and its differential input. The loop gain is a product of the very high op-amp gain and the very low bridge ratio. At the oscillating frequency, the bridge is slightly unbalanced and has a very small transfer ratio; so, the loop gain is about unity.
The final, and maybe the most popular viewpoint, is to break down the Wien bridge into two half bridges, and to consider the overall feedback as composed of two partial feedbacks - a nonlinear negative feedback (the voltage divider Rb-Rf connected to the inverting op-amp input) and a frequency-dependent positive feedback (the Wien network connected to the non-inverting input). Thus the feedback voltage applied to the op-amp differential input is the difference between the two partial voltages.
Now about the operation...
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"...the equilibrium point...."
I am afraid, there is not ONE equilibrium point because the poles always are moving.
That complicates the analysis (and the understanding) a bit, does it not?
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I have been recruiting students for our various telecommunication projects and we faced a lot of issues during the induction process.
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Teach them to work with open source communities on open source software. This will give them valuable project experience.
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Suggestions welcome - especially for undergraduate engineering degrees.
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No question our educational systems (around the whole world) are in crisis. How did we get here, to the point where faculty look forward to moest labor and comfortable retirement (to say nothing of university administrators) while students face life-crushing debts which (in the US) cannot EVER be foregone, even in bankruptcy.
One way to go - horror of horrors - is back to the medieval structure of education - when academics had to pay their own way and there was not a huge institutional apparatus to select, present, and credential students. You sat at Adam Smith's feet and he charged you so much per lecture. If his work didn't sell, he would be impecunious (though the university gave him a place to live - I was a prof at Glasgow once).
The post WW2 urge to expand education, make it less elitist (a political objective) and more economically relevant (an economic policy objective), and generally move towards 'mass education' as a significant feature of modern society has collided with some inconvenient truths. That without an active market in the educational products being provided the system has become woefully flabby and inefficient in cost performance terms. It invites abuse. As an engineer I can say that firms have been very happy indeed to have someone else pay for their knowledge assets (the employees' skills) rather than have to create them internally as the pharma companies try to create their own drugs and own them through patenting. Can this continue? Is it more economically efficienct to have the whole higher education apparatus in lieu of corporation-based (and paid for) training for that specific company?
The debate about the German two-track system versus the US one-track system is relevant here in that the two-track system is closer to a corporate-managed education and so seems less open to systematic and institutional abuse. Against such economically oriented education we have the Newman notion of university education for good citizenship and the all-round balanced and educated life. Who should pay for this national-level product?
As someone who moved from engineering into business education I would argue that it is not at all obvious that the services BSchools provide have had much impact on 'managerial capability' and that it is more like a semi-institutionalized 'boot camp' for those aspiring to be managers in modern firms. It is mostly about how to talk the managerial talk. There is little science and virtually no theory of socio-economic significance. This flabbiness has created huge opportunities for a generation of faculty who provide no real value - economic or in terms of helping students become better citizens - and yet live very comfortable lives. At whose expense?? This probably cannot continue.
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Integrated circuits are built of many electronic elements connected in a circuit that is enclosed in a package. These integrated circuits are connected in various circuits. An example is an op-amp (built of many transistors, resistors and capacitors) that is used to build an op-amp inverting amplifier. Then what is the op-amp here - a circuit or an element?
Another example is a negative impedance converter. It consists of a few resistors and an op-amp, and acts as a negative resistor. What is it - a circuit (NIC) or an element (NR)?
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If your circuit is built in a larger systems and given a symbol it is then a component or a device according to the above definitions. Elements are not dividable as we know from the chemistry. You can call it an element as analogy with the conventional resistors i, e, from the functionality point of view.
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After all the epic discussions-:) about the Wien bridge oscillator...
...I have finally arrived at the conclusion that we have to consider the bare Wien network as a key point of understanding the Wien oscillator. For this purpose, we have to reveal the role of each element constituting the whole network. Here are my speculations.
The Wien network consists of four elements - C1, R1, C2 and R2, but they can be grouped into two parts (impedance elements) - the lower part consists of the two connected in parallel C1 and R1; the upper part consists of the two connected in series C2 and R2. Thus, the Wien network can be thought as of a frequency- or time-dependent voltage divider. Let's think freely over and even dream about this ubiquitous arrangement to stir our imagination...
The voltage divider configuration consists of two impedances connected in series. The input voltage is applied across the whole network. The output voltage is taken between the common point and some reference point: the ground, the voltage supply rail or a middle point (virtual ground). In the last case, we obtain a bridge configuration (the Wien bridge in our case).
FREQUENCY DOMAIN. The two elements (resistive, nonlinear, reactive, etc.) of the voltage divider configuration have an opposite influence over the transfer ratio and the output voltage. If only one of them is frequently dependent (a capacitor), it will act as "loosing" or "pulling" element when the frequency increases from zero up to infinity. Thus we obtain the classic integrating (low-pass) and differentiating (high-pass) circuits.
Now assume both the elements are frequency-dependent and we have taken the voltage drop across the lower element as an output (the case of the Wien bridge oscillator). When the frequency increases, the impedance of the lower element decreases up to zero and the ratio (the output voltage) decreases up to zero as well. Contrary, if the frequency decreases, the impedance of the upper element increases up to infinity and the ratio (the output voltage) decreases up to zero again. Only at some ("resonant") frequency the ratio of this frequency-dependent voltage divider reaches its maximum of 1/3 and the circuit behaves as some "mixture" of integrating and differentiating circuits (band-pass). It is interesting to see how such a behavior is achieved... to imagine how Wien was thinking when inventing this clever passive circuits... to put ourselves in his place...
If the two elements had opposite frequency-dependent behavior (a capacitor and an inductor), there was no a problem to create a band-pass voltage divider. The problem here is that we have only one kind of a frequency-dependent element - a capacitor, having a different behavior at different frequencies: it has a low impedance at high frequency and high impedance at low frequency. Then, how do we make it to have the same behavior (not to pass the signal) at both the frequencies - high and low?
If we look closely at the Wien network, we can discern an integrating (low-pass) circuit or a differentiating (high-pass) circuit or both the elementary circuits inside it. First, we can think of it as of an integrating circuit R2-C1 that is "neutralized" at extremely low frequencies by connecting the capacitor C2 in series with the resistor R2 and the resistor R1 in parallel to the capacitor C1. Then, with the same success, we can think of it as of a differentiating circuit C2-R1 that is "neutralized" at extremely high frequencies by connecting the resistor R2 in series with the capacitor C2 and the capacitor C1 in parallel to the resistor R1.
Thus, at the very high frequencies, the behavior of the upper capacitor C2 is reversed and made similar to the behavior of an inductor by connecting in series the resistor R2 (the capacitive reactance has gradually disapeared with the frequency increase and the resistance R2 has gradually dominated). At the very low frequencies, the behavior of the lower capacitor C1 is reversed and made similar to the behavior of an inductor by connecting in parallel the resistor R1 (the capacitive reactance has gradually increased up to infinity with the frequency decrease and the resistance R1 has gradually dominated).
So, this was the great Wien's idea - to transmute a capacitor into an "inductor": at the very high frequencies - by connecting in series a resistor; at the very low frequencies - by connecting in parallel a resistor. Am I right?
TIME DOMAIN. It is even more interesting to investigate the Wien network operation through the time. I would even build a "real-time simulation" arrangement to visualize the operation extremely slowly, in a human friendly manner, like this one:
For this purpose, use high resistances (e.g., 100 kom) and large capacitances (e.g., 100 μF) to obtain an extremely low "resonant" frequency (about 0.01 Hz). Then, drive the network with a varying sine wave voltage source with an extremely low frequency (it is interesting to vary the voltage manually trying to keep a sine wave). Next, connect three Microlab analog inputs (ADCs): the first - to the input voltage; the second - to the voltage of the common point between the upper elements R2 and C2; the third - to the common point between the two network parts (the common point of R1, C1 and R2). Finally, write a program that continuously measures the voltages and draws voltage bars over the respective elements representing the voltages across them like this diagram (in addition, it draws current loops):
My next explanations are closely related to the Lutz's considerations about the network operation, e.g. this one: "...However, always: V(P)<V(N) because charging of Cp with decreasing charge current (Voltage at Cp goes high up to a maximum and then decreases again due to Cs charging and discharging through Rp at the same time)..." Now begin changing up and down (wiggle) the input voltage: first - very slowly, then moderately and finally - very quickly.
1. When you wiggle the input voltage slowly, the role of the capacitor C1 and the resistor R2 is negligible and we may ignore them (to imagine there is no C1 and R2 is a short connection). So, the Wien network acts as a humble differentiating C2-R1 circuit. Note that the discharging current through the resistor R1 dominates over the charging current coming from the upper part of the network and the output voltage "leads" the input one (there is a phase shift); the respective voltage bars on the screen do not move in the same direction. See also:
2. Contrary, when you wiggle the input voltage quickly, the role of the resistor R1 and the capacitor C2 is negligible and we may ignore them (to imagine there is no R1 and C2 is a short connection). Now, the Wien network acts as a humble integrating R2-C1 circuit. Now note that the charging current coming from the upper part of the network dominates over the discharging current through the resistor R1 and the output voltage lags the input one (there is a phase shift again); the respective voltage bars on the screen do not move in the same direction as above. See again:
3. And finally, when you wiggle the input voltage moderately (with a rate of change corresponding to the "resonant" frequency f0), all the elements play a role in the circuit operation, and the Wien network acts as a humble "resistive" voltage divider. There is such a proportion between the charging and discharging currents so that the output voltage follows the input one (there is no phase shift at all). But how do we define this "moderate rate of change"? Just look at the two voltage bars representing respectively the input and the output voltage on the screen and adjust the rate of change of the input voltage so that the output voltage bar to follow the input one.
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Hi, Zekry! I am happy that still there are people as you, Lutz, Pisupati and maybe others... and that we have met here to join our efforts in this noble undertaking - to reveal the truth behind circuit phenomena and to show it to people. The sorry fact is that the truth about circuits is (intentionally) hidden for a variety of reasons:
I have never understood why "Electronic devices are based on brilliant circuit ideas that are conceived once in beautiful minds by lots of imagination, intuition and emotions. However, time mercilessly covers up these pearls of human thought and we have to dig for long in the garbage of mediocrity to uncover them"... As you have said, "I put myself in place of WIEN to find out how he thought in his circuit"...
The sorry truth is that the education prefers to show the final perfect circuit solutions than the circuit evoluation, the road to them, where the very truth is hidden; it shows mainly specific circuit implementations than general circuit truths... It is extremely interesting to discuss how to understand, present and invent circuits... Thank you for the encouragement.
Regards, Cyril.
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The Wikipedia says:
"To convert from a base-10 integer numeral to its base-2 (binary) equivalent, the number is divided by two, and the remainder is the least-sign