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International Journal of Computer Games Technology
Volume 2009 (2009), Article ID 952524, 15 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2009/952524
Research Article

Experiential Learning in Vehicle Dynamics Education via Motion Simulation and Interactive Gaming

1NY State Center for Engineering, Design and Industrial Innovation, University at Buffalo-SUNY, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA
2Milliken Research Associates, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA
3Graduate School of Education, University at Buffalo-SUNY, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA
4Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University at Buffalo-SUNY, Buffalo, NY 14260, USA

Received 27 September 2008; Accepted 15 February 2009

Academic Editor: Xiaopeng Zhang

Copyright © 2009 Kevin Hulme et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Creating active, student-centered learning situations in postsecondary education is an ongoing challenge for engineering educators. Contemporary students familiar with visually engaging and fast-paced games can find traditional classroom methods of lecture and guided laboratory experiments limiting. This paper presents a methodology that incorporates driving simulation, motion simulation, and educational practices into an engaging, gaming-inspired simulation framework for a vehicle dynamics curriculum. The approach is designed to promote active student participation in authentic engineering experiences that enhance learning about road vehicle dynamics. The paper presents the student use of physical simulation and large-scale visualization to discover the impact that design decisions have on vehicle design using a gaming interface. The approach is evaluated using two experiments incorporated into a sequence of two upper level mechanical engineering courses.