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4th Grade Students Investigate Electric Circuits Through Construction and Illustration
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As an activity related to FOSS unit Magnetism and Electricity, 4th grade science students use a computer download to explore electrical circuits and to generate illustrations of electrical circuits for physical models built in class

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Lorraine Aaland
Date Added:
04/18/2018
AM I on the Radio?
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Student groups create working radios by soldering circuit components supplied from AM radio kits. By carrying out this activity in conjunction with its associated lesson concerning circuits and how AM radios work, students are able to identify each circuit component they are soldering, as well as how their placement causes the radio to work. Besides reinforcing lesson concepts, students also learn how to solder, which is an activity that many engineers perform regularly giving students a chance to be able to engage in a real-life engineering activity.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Brandon Jones
Emily Spataro
Lara Oliver
Lisa Burton
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Arctic Animal Robot
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Students create four-legged walking robots and measure how far they travel across different types of surfaces. They design and create "shoes" to add to the robots' feet and observe the effect of their modifications on the net distance traveled across the various surface types. This activity illustrates how the specialized locomotive features of different species help them to survive or thrive in their habitat environments. The activity is best as an enrichment tool that follows a lesson that introduces the concept of biological adaptation to students.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Andrew Cave
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Biomimicry: Echolocation in Robotics
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Students use ultrasonic sensors and LEGO© MINDSTORMS© NXT robots to emulate how bats use echolocation to detect obstacles. They measure the robot's reaction times as it senses objects at two distances and with different sensor threshold values, and again after making adjustments to optimize its effectiveness. Like engineers, they gather and graph data to analyze a given design (from the tutorial) and make modifications to the sensor placement and/or threshold values in order to improve the robot's performance (iterative design). Students see how problem solving with biomimicry design is directly related to understanding and making observations of nature.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
James Muldoon
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Both Fields at Once?!
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This lesson discusses the result of a charge being subject to both electric and magnetic fields at the same time. It covers the Hall effect, velocity selector, and the charge to mass ratio. Given several sample problems, students learn to calculate the Hall Voltage dependent upon the width of the plate, the drift velocity, and the strength of the magnetic field. Then students learn to calculate the velocity selector, represented by the ratio of the magnitude of the fields assuming the strength of each field is known. Finally, students proceed through a series of calculations to arrive at the charge to mass ratio. A homework set is included as an evaluation of student progress.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Eric Appelt
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Building a Piezoelectric Generator
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Students learn how to build simple piezoelectric generators to power LEDs. To do this, they incorporate into a circuit a piezoelectric element that converts movements they make (mechanical energy) into electrical energy, which is stored in a capacitor (short-term battery). Once enough energy is stored, they flip a switch to light up an LED. Students also learn how much (surprisingly little) energy can be converted using the current state of technology for piezoelectric materials.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Kimberly Anderson
Matthew Zelisko
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Bulbs & Batteries in a Row
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Everyday we are surrounded by circuits that use "in parallel" and "in series" circuitry. Complicated circuits designed by engineers are composed of many simpler parallel and series circuits. During this activity, students build a simple series circuit and discover the properties associated with series circuits.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Daria Kotys-Schwartz
Denise Carlson
Joe Friedrichsen
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Sabre Duren
Xochitl Zamora Thompson
Date Added:
10/14/2015
A Chance at Monte Carlo
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At its core, the LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT product provides a programmable microprocessor. Students use the NXT processor to simulate an experiment involving thousands of uniformly random points placed within a unit square. Using the underlying geometry of the experimental model, as well as the geometric definition of the constant π (pi), students form an empirical ratio of areas to estimate a numerical value of π. Although typically used for numerical integration of irregular shapes, in this activity, students use a Monte Carlo simulation to estimate a common but rather complex analytical form the numerical value of the most famous irrational number, π.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Carleigh Samson
Janet Yowell
Michael Trumpis
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Circuit Arcade
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In this project students gain an understanding of the engineering design process by building a cardboard arcade game where winning or losing completes an electrical circuit. Students will present their arcade game to an audience of middle school or elementary school students. This project was developed by Allen Distinguished Educators Rob Rambach and Patrick Dempsey.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson
Provider:
Allen Distinguished Educators
Date Added:
04/10/2018
A Collection of Some of The Best Word Cloud Tools for Teachers
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CC BY-NC-ND
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A word cloud is a visual representation of the frequencies of words in a text. Teachers can use word clouds for a variety of instructional purposes from creating class groups using students' names to reflecting on lesson plans, this article from 21st Century Educational Technology and Learning Blog outlines over a 100 creative ways you can use word clouds with students in class. Now that you have an idea of the educational and pedagogical potential of word clouds in class instruction, here are some of our favourite web tools an iPad apps we uncovered from our archive which you can utilize to easily generate and share word clouds. Check them out and share with us your feedback in our Facebook page.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Lesson
Author:
Educational Technology and Mobile Learning
Date Added:
04/06/2018
Completing the Circuit
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In the everyday electrical devices we use calculators, remote controls and cell phones a voltage source such as a battery is required to close the circuit and operate the device. In this hands-on activity, students use batteries, wires, small light bulbs and light bulb holders to learn the difference between an open circuit and a closed circuit, and understand that electric current only occurs in a closed circuit.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Daria Kotys-Schwartz
Denise W. Carlson
Janet Yowell
Joe Friedrichsen
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Sabre Duren
Xochitl Zamora Thompson
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Concentrated Solar Power
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Students learn how the total solar irradiance hitting a photovoltaic (PV) panel can be increased through the use of a concentrating device, such as a reflector or lens. This is the final lesson in the Photovoltaic Efficiency unit and is intended to accompany a fun design project (see the associated Concentrating on the Sun with PVs activity) to wrap up the unit. However, it can be completed independently of the other unit lessons and activities.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Abigail Watrous
Jack Baum
Stephen Johnson
William Surles
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Concentrating on the Sun with PVs
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Students design, build and test reflectors to measure the effect of solar reflectance on the efficiency of solar PV panels. They use a small PV panel, a multimeter, cardboard and foil to build and test their reflectors in preparation for a class competition. Then they graph and discuss their results with the class. Complete this activity as part of the Photovoltaic Efficiency unit and in conjunction with the Concentrated Solar Power lesson.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Abigail Watrous
Jack Baum
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Stephen Johnson
William Surles
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Conductor or Insulator?
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This activity involves an investigation into whether items in a classroom are conductors or insulators. The students predict and then test the items using a complete circuit they have built.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Kris Hagemeyer
Date Added:
04/18/2018
Control Using Sound
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Students gain a deeper understanding of how sound sensors work through a hands-on design challenge involving LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT taskbots and sound sensors. Student groups each program a robot computer to use to the sound of hand claps to control the robot's movement. They learn programming skills and logic design in parallel. They experience how robots can take sensor input and use it to make decisions to move and turn, similar to the human sense of hearing. A PowerPoint® presentation and pre/post quizzes are provided.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Pranit Samarth
Satish S. Nair
Srijith Nair
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Designing a Thermostat
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Students investigate circuits and their components by building a basic thermostat. They learn why key parts are necessary for the circuit to function, and alter the circuit to optimize the thermostat temperature range. They also gain an awareness of how electrical engineers design circuits for the countless electronic products in our world.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denise W. Carlson
Lauren Cooper
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Tyler Maline
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Don't Bump into Me!
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Students' understanding of how robotic ultrasonic sensors work is reinforced in a design challenge involving LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT robots and ultrasonic sensors. Student groups program their robots to move freely without bumping into obstacles (toy LEGO people). They practice and learn programming skills and logic design in parallel. They see how robots take input from ultrasonic sensors and use it to make decisions to move, resulting in behavior similar to the human sense of sight but through the use of sound sensors, more like echolocation. Students design-test-redesign-retest to achieve successful programs. A PowerPoint® presentation and pre/post quizzes are provided.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Nishant Sinha
Pranit Samarth
Satish S. Nair
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Electric Circuits - Guided Inquiry
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This is a series of lab activities where students complete experiments for open, closed, series and parallel circuits.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Patty Gavin
Date Added:
04/18/2018
Electrifying the World
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This lesson introduces students to the fundamental concepts of electricity. This is accomplished by addressing questions such as "How is electricity generated," and "How is it used in every-day life?" The lesson also includes illustrative examples of circuit diagrams to help explain how electricity flows.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Wendy Lin
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Electrocardiograph Building
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Building on concepts taught in the associated lesson, students learn about bioelectricity, electrical circuits and biology as they use deductive and analytical thinking skills in connection with an engineering education. Students interact with a rudimentary electrocardiograph circuit (made by the teacher) and examine the simplicity of the device. They get to see their own cardiac signals and test the device themselves. During the second part of the activity, a series of worksheets, students examine different EKG print-outs and look for irregularities, as is done for heart disease detection.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
James Crawford
Katherine Murray
Leyf Peirce
Mark Remaly
Shayn Peirce
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Filtering: Removing Noise from a Distress Signal
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Students learn the basic principles of filtering as well as how to apply digital filters to extract part of an audio signal by using an interactive online demo website. They apply this knowledge in order to isolate a voice recording from a heavily noise-contaminated sound wave. After completing the associated lesson, expect students to be able to attempt (and many successfully finish) this activity with minimal help from the instructor.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ayoade Adekola
Chris Light
Connor McKay
Dehui Yang
Kyle R. Feaster
Michael B. Wakin
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Follow the Light
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Students' understanding of how robotic light sensors work is reinforced in a design challenge involving LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT robots and light sensors. Working in pairs, students program LEGO robots to follow a flashlight as its light beam moves around. Students practice and learn programming skills and logic design in parallel. They see how robots take input from light sensors and use it to make decisions to move, similar to the human sense of sight. Students also see how they perform the steps of the engineering design process in the course of designing and testing to achieve a successful program. A PowerPoint® presentation and pre/post quizzes are provided.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Nishant Sinha
Pranit Samarth
Satish S. Nair
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Generators: Three Mile Island vs. Hoover Dam
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Students are given a history of electricity and its development into the modern age lifeline upon which we so depend. The methods of power generation are introduced, and further discussion of each technology's pros and cons follows.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Brandon Jones
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Get Charged!
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Students are introduced to the idea of electrical energy. They learn about the relationships between charge, voltage, current and resistance. They discover that electrical energy is the form of energy that powers most of their household appliances and toys. In the associated activities, students learn how a circuit works and test materials to see if they conduct electricity. Building upon a general understanding of electrical energy, they design their own potato power experiment. In two literacy activities, students learn about the electrical power grid and blackouts.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Denise W. Carlson
Jeff Lyng
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Sharon D. Perez-Suarez
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Get Your Motor Running
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Students investigate motors and electromagnets as they construct their own simple electric motors using batteries, magnets, paper clips and wire.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Abigail Watrous
Ashleigh Bailey
Denise Carlson
Janet Yowell
Joe Friedrichsen
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Go with the Flow
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Students gain an understanding of the difference between electrical conductors and insulators, and experience recognizing a conductor by its material properties. In a hands-on activity, students build a conductivity tester to determine whether different objects are conductors or insulators. In another activity, students use their understanding of electrical properties to choose appropriate materials to design and build their own basic circuit switch.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Daria Kotys Schwartz
Denise Carlson
Joe Friedrichsen
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Sabre Duren
Xochitl Zamora Thompson
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Gr 9 PAA iMovie for Assessment
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DIY Video~ How to wire your home?After spending time learning about the various ways to wire outlets ( two way and three way) and light switches, the students had to create an imovie that was designed as a Do It Yourself video that specifically explains the various components and steps to wire light switches and outlets in a home.

Subject:
Practical & Applied Arts
Electrical & Electronics
Author:
Sun West School Division
Date Added:
06/19/2018
Hare and Snail Challenges
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Students engage in the second design challenge of the unit, which is an extension of the maze challenge they solved in the first lesson/activity of this unit. Students extend the ideas learned in the maze challenge with a focus more on the robot design. Gears are a very important part of any machine, particularly when it has a power source such as engine or motor. Specifically, students learn how to design the gear train from the LEGO MINDSTORMS(TM) NXT servomotor to the wheel to make the LEGO taskbot go faster or slower. A PowerPoint® presentation, pre/post quizzes and a worksheet are provided.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Pranit Samarth
Sachin Nair
Satish S. Nair
Date Added:
09/18/2014
How Does a Robot Work?
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This lesson introduces electricity, batteries and motors using a LEGO® MINDSTORMS NXT® robot. The associated activity guides students to build a simple LEGO NXT set-up and see the practical implementation of the concepts discussed. Before studying the importance of electricity and how it is crucial for robot movement, students consider various electronic devices they use in their daily lives so that they have an understanding of how engineers use electricity to power such devices, including robots. The lesson starts with a brief introduction to electricity and the working of batteries. A simple electrical circuit demonstration highlights how three basic electrical devices (buzzer, LED and motor) are driven by electricity. An activity at the end further reinforces these concepts.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Lesson
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ajay Nair
Kalyani Upendram
Satish Nair
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Ice, Ice, PV!
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Students examine how the power output of a photovoltaic (PV) solar panel is affected by temperature changes. Using a 100-watt lamp and a small PV panel connected to a digital multimeter, teams vary the temperature of the panel and record the resulting voltage output. They plot the panel's power output and calculate the panel's temperature coefficient.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Eszter Horanyi
Jack Baum Abby Watrous
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Stephen Johnson
William Surles
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Introduction to Circuits and Ohm's Law
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Students explore the basics of DC circuits, analyzing the light from light bulbs when connected in series and parallel circuits. Ohm's law and the equation for power dissipated by a circuit are the two primary equations used to explore circuits connected in series and parallel. Students measure and see the effect of power dissipation from the light bulbs. Kirchhoff's voltage law is used to show how two resistor elements add in series, while Kirchhoff's current law is used to explain how two resistor elements add when in parallel. Students also learn how electrical engineers apply this knowledge to solve problems. Power dissipation is particularly important with the introduction of LED bulbs and claims of energy efficiency, and understanding how power dissipation is calculated helps when evaluating these types of claims. This activity is designed to introduce students to the concepts needed to understand how circuits can be reduced algebraically.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Erik Wemlinger
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Introduction to Open and Closed Electrical Circuits
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Students will act out open and closed circuits and is followed by individual journal writing and a class discussion.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Eric Christensen
Date Added:
04/18/2018
Investigating Electricity:  Testing for Electrical Conductivity (Conductors and Insulators) Using a Variety of Materials
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In this lab, the students will test a variety of materials to discover which items are conductors and which items are insulators. They will discuss, classify, record data, and develop new questions relating to electricity.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College
Provider Set:
Pedagogy in Action
Author:
Kim Osman
Date Added:
04/18/2018
Is It Shocking?
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To better understand electricity, students investigate the properties of materials based on their ability to dispel static electricity. They complete a lab worksheet, collect experimental data, and draw conclusions based on their observations and understanding of electricity. The activity provides hands-on learning experience to safely explore the concept of static electricity, learning what static electricity is and which materials best hold static charge. Students learn to identify materials that hold static charge as insulators and materials that dispel charge as conductors. The class applies the results from their material tests to real-world engineering by identifying the best of the given materials for moving current in a solar panel.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Andrew Palermo
Cristian Heredia
Lauren Jabusch
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Keep It Moving! from Electrons to Electric Motors
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Students act as engineers to apply what they know about how circuits work in electrical/motorized devices to design their own battery-operated model motor vehicles with specific paramaters. They calculate the work done by the vehicles and the power produced by their motor systems.

Subject:
Electrical & Electronics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Christiana Chang
Duane Turner
Eduardo Guevera
Gangbing Song
Mark Bulger
Date Added:
09/18/2014