1887

Abstract

In engineering, thermodynamics is the science of energy. This includes traditional and alternative sources of energy and energy availability, conversion and transmission. Practical engineering issues such as the efficiency of thermodynamic processes and systems are also covered in engineering thermodynamics courses. As the world is becoming more aware of the impeding energy crisis, a rounded understanding of thermodynamics by the engineers of 2020 is vital for addressing this global issue. Despite the importance of the subject, past and current engineering students worldwide struggle with thermodynamics as indicated by the pertinent literature. Student's difficulties with thermodynamics have been reported in several European countries, the US, Australia and India. Indeed, understanding the root causes of problems with teaching/learning thermodynamics is a requisite first step toward any solution, e.g., a design of effective new instructional strategies, curricula and textbooks. This paper provides a concise account of the pertinent literature, and analyzes this literature in order to accurately frame the problems of learning (and teaching) thermodynamics. The paper describes methods used for probing these problems and attempts to solve them.

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2015-08-29
2019-10-16
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