Complutense University (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN14 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Pages: 5821-5824
ISBN: 978-84-617-0557-3
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 7-9 July, 2014
Location: Barcelona, Spain
In recent times, new tools that greatly facilitate the creation of virtual laboratories have appeared, in which no programming skills are required. For example, Matlab and Mathematica softwares incorporate tools to easily create web applications and perform different simulations of processes in which the user can interact with the web application. This work uses NetBeans IDE tool developed by Oracle Corporation.

The idea of web-based virtual laboratory is not new. However, this issue has received much more attention in recent years due to the implementation of new learning technologies in the classroom, and the rapid expansion of the Internet. Currently, it can be find a large number of virtual labs online which cover very different topics as environmental applications, electronic simulation, etc.

In technical and scientific disciplines conducting experiments in real plants is essential to consolidate the theoretical concepts learned in classrooms. However, due to different reasons, actual laboratories are not always available, which imposes restrictions on learning. Fortunately, in this sense, new Java-based technologies can be used to enhance the accessibility of experiments. In this case, the use of NetBeans IDE (open-source integrated development environment) supports the development of all Java applications.

This paper shows some of the available options used within the field of Chemical Engineering in order to achieve that these practices can be used in other areas of knowledge. Through the applets presented in this work, the intention is obtain a useful and versatile tool in order to improve the individual study of students. These simulations, as a tool enhancing the teaching and learning processes, are made using the NetBeans IDE tool and the applets described in this paper, which are available for use in the Moodle platform of Complutense University in the subject of Thermal Engineering. This work is included in the current trend of applying new technologies to active learning methods for self-learning and thus enhances the overall student learning.
Innovation, Chemical Engineering, Practical learning, Applets.