During the 1999-2000 academic year, we developed a one-hour multimedia course covering the final third of a traditional thermodynamics course. In the paper we use the term "media" to describe the manner in which the content is delivered. The thermodynamics course is delivered via CD-ROM or Internet. We introduce the term "genre" to describe the nature of the content based on its application. The thermodynamics course is a combination of two genres: textbook supplement and lecture. The course permits students to complete the final five weeks of the thermodynamics course independently. During the summer of 2000, three students successfully completed the one-hour course. We are confident that lifelong learning will be an important component in our students' futures, and that much of the learning will take place in a digital environment. For this reason, we feel it is important to introduce students to the importance of lifelong learning and provide them an opportunity to learn independently in a digital environment. Seventy-one students, enrolled in the traditional lecture on campus, successfully completed one of the modules from the multimedia course, delivered over the Internet. They performed as well on an examination question as students who had been exposed to the material in a traditional lecture format.
Available from: http://www.researchgate.net/publication/267782035_Thermodynamic_Cycles_A_Multimedia_Independent_Study_Course [accessed Oct 29, 2015].