Recommendations for Integration:
It is entirely possible to integrate
this assignment from electrical diagnosis to other areas of
automotive repair. Being the website used is an automotive
listserv; engine, transmission, brakes and suspension courses
could prosper by utilizing the current email messages with real
world problems. Once the basic foundational information is
covered earlier in the course by the instructor, the class could
move into diagnosing these particular areas. Minor
modifications to the student worksheet would be necessary.
As with any learning object, it is good process for the
instructor to review the first emailed electrical problem with
the class. After explaining the step by step process you
would use for repair, discuss the electrical tests you would
perform, and render two or three possible causes utilizing the
electrical schematics for the vehicle. Upon obtaining
other repair suggestions from the students, review the final fix
for the problem. Now you can handout a different emailed
electrical problem as a homework assignment.
It is imperative the instructor does
not establish a standard process, but works with the student to
see consistency and rationale behind the steps they take to
repair electrical problems. The student is developing a
technique for problem solving. The goal is for the student
to establish their own method for repair.
The foundation for problem solving is
developed first. The focus should not be on whether or not
the student is able to determine the exact fix for the vehicle.
Student work on actual vehicles later in the semester will focus
on actually fixing electrical problems.
The email listserv
must be available to the instructor on a daily basis to obtain
the real life problems, and their fixes, from automotive
mechanics. To circumvent intermittent problems that may
occur in email systems, it is advisable to collect a number of
problem emails and file them away for future use. It is
best to store a number of these problems and their fixes on a
backup flash drive, and have associated hard copies ready for
hand out to the class.