Florida Atlantic University (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN09 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Pages: 1501-1512
ISBN: 978-84-612-9801-3
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2009
Location: Barcelona ,Spain
MATLAB (MATrix LABoratory) is a powerful data analysis, prototyping, and visualization tool with built-in support for matrices and matrix operations, excellent graphics capabilities, and a friendly programming language and development environment. MATLAB has become very popular with engineers, scientists, and researchers in both industry and academia, due to many factors, among them, the availability of rich sets of specialized functions – encapsulated in toolboxes – for many important areas, from neural networks, to finances, to image processing.

MATLAB and its Image Processing Toolbox (IPT) have been used for image and video processing teaching and research by many professors worldwide. In addition to its excellent technical capabilities, MATLAB is extremely easy to use, has a gentle learning curve, and engages the user in an interactive learning style that resembles the ideas laid out by M. Csikszentmihalyi in his theory of flow [Csi90], in which he claims that the key to having an optimal experience is having the right challenge level matched with the correct skill level.

MATLAB and the IPT are not only technically powerful, but particularly well-suited to algorithmic development in the fields of image and video processing. With MATLAB and the IPT, students can focus on developing, adapting, modifying, integrating, and testing image and video processing algorithms instead of getting distracted by other tasks such as reading and writing from/to different file formats or displaying their results on a window.

In this paper, I review the main features of MATLAB and the IPT and provide examples derived from my personal experience using MATLAB in educational and academic research settings for more than 13 years in four different countries. More specifically, I present samples of MATLAB-based tutorials for image and video processing that I’ve created during this period and discuss how they succeed in accommodating the right amount of challenge that will raise the student’s skills by a certain amount, and so on, in a staircase-like progression, using MATLAB’s friendly interactive capabilities. I conclude the paper with students’ testimonies and success stories that support the effectiveness of the proposed approach.

image processing, video processing, matlab, tutorials, interactive learning.