Case Studies of Authentic Learning Tasks Method Applied in Industrial Technology

  • P. N. Rao (University of Northern Iowa)
  • Julie Z. Zhang (University of Northern Iowa)


The Authentic Learning Task (ALT) was initiated by the National Center for Manufacturing Education (NCME) sponsored through a National Science Foundation (NSF) project as a means of studying subject matter through hands on projects. Recently, more and more professors recognize and advocate this method because of better engagement and comprehension for students using hands-on projects. This paper describes two case studies of the ALT projects applied in two different courses, namely Advanced Computer Numerical Control and Statistical Quality Control, at a four-year Manufacturing Technology Program. Step-by-step instructions are presented on how the ALT projects were organized, implemented, and evaluated in the courses. The paper also includes student feedback which is useful for further refining and improving the design of a similar ALT project. The experience shared in this paper will benefit college instructors who are in similar circumstances by making the teaching/ learning of technical concepts more interesting and effective.

Keywords: curriculum|manufacturing|NC/CNC|quality|statistical methods|teaching methods

How to Cite:

Rao, P. N. & Zhang, J. Z., (2009) “Case Studies of Authentic Learning Tasks Method Applied in Industrial Technology”, Journal of Industrial Technology 25(3).

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Published on
01 Jul 2009