In developing traditional learning materials, quality is the key issue to be considered. However, for high technical e-training courses, not only the quality of the learning materials but also the efficiency of developing the courses needs to be taken into consideration. It is a challenging issue for experienced engineers to develop up-to-date e-training courses for inexperienced engineers before further new technologies are proposed. To cope with these problems, a concept relationship-oriented approach is proposed in this paper. A system for developing e-training courses has been implemented based on the novel approach. Experimental results showed that the novel approach can significantly shorten the time needed for developing e-training courses, such that engineers can receive up-to-date technologies in time.
Engineering training is not only a frequent activity but also a heavy burden to enterprises, owing to the rapid advance of new technologies. As engineering courses need to be replaced or updated frequently, researchers have attempted to apply e-training technology to efficiently and effectively develop and manage the learning materials and the training process. For example, a system that can assist in organizing system knowledge and operational information to enhance operation performance was proposed by Vasandani and Govindaraj (1991, 1995); moreover, a system that automatically determines exercise progression and remediation during a training session based on past student performance was presented by Gonzalez and Ingraham (1994). Meanwhile, various techniques and tools for developing intelligent tutoring systems have also been proposed, including the use of a neural networks technique to model student behaviors in the context of intelligent tutoring systems (Harp, Samad, & Villano, 1995), planning methods, consistency enforcement, objects and structured menu tools to construct intelligent simulation-based tutors for procedural skills (Rowe & Galvi, 1998), and technology for detecting online status of students to establish interactive intelligent tutoring system (Hwang, 1998; Giraffa, Mora, & Vicari, 1999). It can be observed that such e-learning or e-training systems have been widely applied to schools and industries recently (Ozdemir & Alpaslan, 2000; Hwang, 2002).