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ENE Memo: November 4, 2013

From the Head: 11/4

Pioneers of Engineering Education Research and Scholarship at Purdue: John Lindenlaub

This is the second in a series of three postings to recognize some of the pioneers who provided a foundation for educational research and scholarship in engineering at Purdue. These individuals will be our guest panelists at the ENE Interdisciplinary Engineering Colloquium on November 14.

Dr. John Lindenlaub earned his B.S. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from MIT in 1955 and 1957, respectively. He completed his PhD at Purdue in 1961. His academic career was at Purdue in Electrical and Computer Engineering with sabbaticals to the legendary Bell Telephone Labs (1968/69) and Worchester Polytechnic Institute (1983/84). He retired professor emeritus in 1999.

In 1967 he adapted audio tutorial instruction (ATI) techniques in his laboratory on Information Transmission, Modulation and Noise, a senior course in communications theory. The idea of audio tutorials came from Professor Sam Postlethwait in biology at Purdue. Originally conceived as a system of supplementary instruction for weaker freshmen, ATI became a method for supporting independent study for any student. You may even think of it as an early form of “flipping the lecture.” Some ideas never grow old—only the technology changes.

The use of ATI was the first of a whole series of teaching and learning innovations that Dr. Lindenlaub engaged in over the next 30 years. These include: training materials for remote sensing data analysis (1970/74); study guides for information transmission, modulation and noise (1972/73); self-paced version of Introduction to Digital Logic Design (1976/77); update and revision of independent study materials on electric circuit analysis (1977/78); hybrid techniques for efficient instruction of large enrollment engineering courses (1979/81); use of computer to aid in teaching/managing a computer programming course (1981/82); video tape demonstrations for an integrated circuit fabrication laboratory (1981/82); video tapes on programmable interface chips (1983/84); computer-based instruction research (1985/90), industry- funded EE student intern program (1985/90), exploring academic careers (1986/87); new roles for computer/communications technology in engineering education (1987/89), engineering workstations for electrical engineering education (1989/90); multi-media knowledge base for digital logic design (1990/94); computer analysis and design aids in the classroom (1990/91); exploring the impact of technology on the professor's role in teaching/learning process (1995); "desk top" video production and duplication systems (1995/96).

An especially notable initiative was the creation of the NSF-funded Center for Instructional Development (1977-81). During the grant period, four major instructional development projects were completed, a seminar/workshop series was established, a luncheon/seminar program was conducted, and a summer faculty instructional development program was created. One of the enthusiastic attendees at events run by the Center of Instructional Development was our own Phil Wankat. Interestingly, the center hired a communications specialist, Frank Oreovicz, who later teamed with Phil Wankat to develop the teaching engineering course and book, but that is another story for another day.

Dr. Lindenlaub also played a pivotal role in creating what has become the engineering education research community nationally. He was a member of the committee of the IEEE Education Society that created the Frontiers in Education (FIE) conference in 1971, still one of the major conferences in the annual calendar for the ENE community. Helen Plants was a mentor to him. He was general chair of the FIE 1973 conference, held at Purdue. He is a past Chairman of ASEE PIC IV and the ERM Division. He has served as Secretary-Treasurer, Vice-President and President of the IEEE Education Society. He is a Fellow of ASEE and IEEE.

Dr. Lindenlaub is truly an indomitable innovator.


Calendar: 11/4

Fall 2013

  • Nov 8: Engineering Education Industrial Advisory Council (E2IAC) 
  • Nov 9: ENE Friends at the Football
  • Nov 13: Faculty Discussion: FYE Research, ARMS BO98B Innovation Studio 9:30-12:30 
  • Nov 14: Interdisciplinary Engineering Colloquium: Indomitable Innovators: Pioneers of Engineering Education Research at Purdue
  • Nov 18: TULIP - Problem Solving, ARMS 3001, 1:30-3pm
  • Nov 20: Advisor-PhD Student matching, ARMS BO98B Innovation Studio 9:30-12:30 
  • Nov 28-29: Thanksgiving
  • Dec 2: TULIP - Messaging FYE Outside FYE, ARMS 3001, 1:30-3pm
  • Dec 4: Faculty Meeting, ARMS 1021 9:30-10:20am

Spring 2014

  • Feb 19: ENE Outstanding Alumni Awards Celebrating 45 Years of  Interdisciplinary Engineering Education
  • April 9: ENE Turns 10: Celebrating a Decade of ENE / Open House and Research Exhibition

Summer 2014

  • June 12-13: SAVE THE DATE. Purdue, Engineering Education Futures: Hearing Global Perspectives   
  • June 14: ENE Alums & Friends Reception, Indianapolis Interdisciplinary Engineering Education
  • June 15-18: ASEE Conference, Indianapolis Engineering Education Futures

Kudos: 11/4 Hanjun Xian on the successful completion of his Ph.D defense.

Krishna Madhavan writes: Hanjun’s committee decided to nominate his work for an outstanding dissertation award also. Hanjun will be joining Microsoft Big Data (Bing Team) as a Research Software Engineer, where he will serve as a primary liaison between the Microsoft Search Group, Big Data Group, and Microsoft Research. This was a fantastic opportunity for him, and he was selected competitively from a very tough pool of scholars. His work will be very close to the kind of things he was doing with the DIA2 big data project. Jeff Huddleston on being named Artisan and Fabrication Lab (AFL) Manager. Jeff has been named AFL Manager, effective Nov 1, 2013. He will be taking on more responsibilities in the overall operation of AFL, as during the time of growth in the AFL and beyond we need his experience and leadership. This opportunity for Jeff reflects his longstanding commitment to excellence in the AFL since he started at Purdue in May 2008, as Jeff sets the collaborative spirit of the AFL every day. Please stop by to congratulate Jeff on this achievement.

To suggest content for future issues of ENE Memo, contact David Radcliffe or Lisa Tally by midday Friday for the following week's issue.