Teaching Engineering Courses with Workbooks


  • Yasar Demirel Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University


One way of increasig the effectiveness of engineering education might be to ensure a better match between the learning styles of students and the teaching styles of instructors. Textbooks also have their own styles in providing the theory and applications, and as such their contents, depth of coverage, and organization may affect the teaching and learning styles. The instructor, as the primary selector of the textbook, has the responsibility of providing the students with an effective teaching strategy. One strategy might be to introduce a workbook in addition to the textbook. An ideal workbook, incorporated with classroom group work and BLACKBOARD, would make the course material easily extractable by students, easier to relate a concept to an application, reduce the possible learning-style mismatches, and facilitate active learning. A workbook does not replace the textbook, but accompanies it. Two trial workbooks have been incorporated in engineering courses in thermodynamics and simulations at Virginia Tech, and most of the students have found them very helpful as a learning tools.

Author Biography

Yasar Demirel, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Yasar Demirel is a visiting professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Virginia Tech. He received his PhD from the University of Birmingham, England. He teaches senior design, thermodynamics, transport phenomena,and simulation. His long-term research focus is coupled physical and biological systems and stability analysis. He is the author of Nonequilibrium Thermodynamics: Transport and Rate Processes in Physical and Biological Systems, published by Elsevier.