Creation of interactive programming-based problem bank for introductory thermodynamics

Project TitleCreation of interactive programming-based problem bank for introductory thermodynamics
Principal InvestigatorCasey Keulen
Co-ApplicantsYu (Claire) Yan, Associate Professor of Teaching, Mechanical, School of Engineering
Amir M. Dehkhoda, Assistant Professor of Teaching, Department of Materials Engineering
FacultyApplied Science
Funding Year2023
Project Summary
Thermodynamics is a core subject that the majority of engineering students take. Many subjects in engineering build on thermodynamics principles. A second-year thermodynamics course is often a prerequisite for a number of other courses such as fluid dynamics and heat transfer. Dr. Claire Yu Yan has recently published an open source textbook for introductory thermodynamics courses: Introduction to Engineering Thermodynamics.

Programming is an excellent way to enable students to explore how variables interact with one another and better understand underlying concepts behind formulas. They can easily visualize equations with plots and other graphics capabilities. This would otherwise be difficult and/or impossible with ‘pencil and paper’ based calculations. Open source languages and tools like Python and Jupyter Notebook are well suited to this due to their capability, open source nature, and vast user communities.

This project aims to develop a problem bank to accompany Dr. Yan’s textbook. The problems and solutions will make use of Jupyter Notebook and require students to code their solutions. Students will benefit from the functionality of coding (varying input parameters, creating plots, implementing algorithms, automatically accessing look-up tables, etc.) to help them better understand the material, while also improving their coding skills.
Grant type OER Implementation
Funded Amount