The activity presented was developed in a mechatronics engineering course related to control theory, in particular, fuzzy control systems. In order to design a fuzzy control system, some mathematical tools are needed to understand the design procedure. So, the proposed activity presents a new way to introduce these new tools in such a way that the students can make some operations with fuzzy sets and share with their partners some applications to solve the proposed operations.
The proposed activity is to record the explanation of some scripts developed in Matlab. In previous courses, an important activity related to operations with fuzzy sets and its implementations in a computational language, like Matlab, was carried out in the first month of the course. Previously, the activity consisted in the development of some script to perform operations with fuzzy sets. The files were uploaded to the online course and I reviewed them without asking the students about the code. This was a huge disadvantage, since I didn´t know if the students really made the activity or understood completely the functions incorporated in the code.
Due to the problems stated formerly, I wanted to ask the students to make a video with the explanation of the functions developed in Matlab. In this way, the students had the opportunity to present the work. Moreover, if the students can explain their work I know that they understand the code developed and the algorithm to perform the operation to fuzzy sets.
How the activity can be implemented?
The proposed challenge will be implemented in the fourth week of the course.
Before the class, the instructor have to:
Make a power point presentation to show some operations with fuzzy sets.
Make a Matlab function example about a function that implement a simple fuzzy set operation.
Prepare a forum and a space in the online course.
In the class, the instructor:
Present the basic operations with fuzzy sets, including complement, intersection, union and relations.
Explain the objective of the activity, in this case, each student must develop some functions in Matlab to implement the fuzzy set operations. Moreover, a video that explain the code of the functions, and some numerical examples, must be recorded.
Explain the procedure to send the activity. At first, each student have to record the code of the functions developed. Then, the video have to be upload to an open platform, like youtube, dropbox, google drive, one drive, etc. The link to the video must be share through twitter with the instructor and a hashtag, in this way, all the students can see all the videos. At the end, the students will provide feedback to the instructor via twitter.
Monitoring the activity
The videos can be seen and reviewed by the instructor by means of the link shared by the students in twitter by using the hashtag #Difuso_CUValles. Moreover, the instructor will provide a forum in the online course to facilitate the recording of the videos and some tools to record and edit video clips.
The instructor have to review the videos and scripts, and provide quantitative and qualitative feedback to each student, based in the performance of the functions. Additionally, the students will provide some comments of the activity, for example, the opinion of the activity, the advantages of the video clip and opportunity areas. The feedback from the students will be available in twitter with the same hashtag.
A quantitative evaluation will be made, considering all the scripts and its effectiveness. Furthermore, taking into account that the students are going to explain their procedure by means a video, a qualitative evaluation will be made, since that if the students can explain their procedure, then, they understand what the function do.
Moreover, all the link to the videos, as well as the students’ feedback, will be available via twitter. Then, a twitter link where the information can be seen. The students’ comments can be found in twitter, #Difuso_CUValles. The students’ comments are summarized as follows:
- In general, the students have a good opinion about the activity, they like to work in social networks. Then, it is easier for them share contents by twitter and see the activities of their partners. In this way, everyone can see the all the videos and every student can see other ways to make the scripts of the activity.
- Moreover, some students who did not understand the procedure to make the scripts, could do their own scripts based on those developed by their partners.
- On the other hand, the students commented that it is funny to make videos and see the other videos.
Since this activity was applied after considering the comments of the first one, the implementation was successful and more effective. The instructions were shared on the online course. All the students see the videos and could make their own scripts. The students could understand the instructions and make the activity. Furthermore, due to the activities are available to all the students, they are able to repeat the scripts that solve the problems of the activity and, then, develop their own scripts. This fact help the students to make the scripts and understand them completely, without the participation of the instructor, which makes the activity more significant.
On the other hand, some students did not know how to capture a video clip, so it was confusing in some sense and it takes a lot of time. Then, in the next implementation, it is important to show in the classroom some tools to make and edit video clips, in such a way that, they can make the videos according to the instructor specifications.
Another obstacle identified in the implementation is related to the resistance of the students to use some social networks. In case of students that don’t use twitter regularly, they didn’t want to have a twitter account. Then, it is important to motivate the students to use social networks since this is the best way to share multimedia contents and see the activities of their partners.