The collaboration lab

Five clusters of six small tables (2' x 3'). Five tables have room for a laptop and papers. One table has a computer projector that can be connected to any laptop. Twenty-five students are supported. Laptops are wireless or wired. Walls are "whiteboard wallpaper" -- plastic that adheres to wallboard or other surfaces.

The Computational Environment

  • Dell laptops - 800 Mhz, 40 GB hard drive, 512 MB memory, CD, Zip drives, 15" LCD display, 10/100 Ethernet, etc.
  • Equipped with web browser, Microsoft Office, Visual Cafe, Java JDK, emacs, X windows connection to departmental Solaris servers.
  • Room software and equipment supported by Drexel's central IT support (IRT)


The Course Web Managment System
  • Secure (password protected) access to course materials
  • Assignments, lecture notes (timed relase)
  • On-line quizzes (automatically graded). This was occasionally a lab activity, although they were not heavily weighted
  • Syllabi
  • Announcements
  • Course marks database
  • Student submission of assignments, return of marked assignments
  • Group shared file space where instructor-defined groups can download/upload files
  • Other features that we did not use (e.g. chatrooms, bulletin boards)


Equipment and Suppot Costs

  • The room cost approximately $100,000 to equip, including computers, whiteboard, furniture, projectors, repainting, cabling.
  • This was the inaugural use of the lab, so we expected some "breaking in" with the equipment and software.
  • Drexel IRT (central IT support)'s budget covers laptop support, software licenses, and WebCT license.