Stage 2— Final Exploratory Research

2/12–2/26

Second visit to Rosedale Technical College

We returned to Rosedale to explore more in depth, how the curriculum and classes are designed for the students. We were fortunate enough to sit in on Chuck Bevington’s class, where we saw students diagnosing and fixing electrical issues. This gave us a chance to see firsthand the types of exercises students go through for each topic, the tools they use, and some of the challenges they face when moving back-and-forth between theoretical and practical learning.

The electrical diagnostic trainer

Chucks class rotates every few weeks, and is made up of 10–12 students. Some have his course as the first part of their training, whereas some students come from finishing their mechanical training. Chuck walked us through his class curriculum and also showed us the workshop space where students were working on different cars. One of the interesting processes of learning about electrical circuit systems in a car was the use of the Electric Diagnostic Trainer. Through this board, Chuck would test students on their ability to solve electrical circuit systems. The students would then move on to a actual car, and practice the same circuit systems. While this was a great practicing tool, the schematics present within a car would be more complex and the students have to learn their way around it. For this they would refer to schematic diagrams in a a reference manual, a complicated diagram that each manufacture produces of any car and cross-reference it to code diagnostic systems.

This complicated process was all on paper, and the students would constantly have to access this information to cross-check their procedures at every step.

We learnt about coded language present in these schemas and also how students would learn to find diagnostic solutions based on which part of the schema had to be fixed. The overall process was insightful and we saw many students practice these procedures in the workshop.

Exploratory Research Presentation

We made a presentation on our Exploratory Research Process to the Microsoft Design team on 2/15. A copy of the presentation can be found here.

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