Title: Cluster-computing as a multidisciplinary instructional tool for business courses

Authors: Fred L. Kitchens, Sushil K. Sharma

Addresses: Department of Information Systems and Operations Management, Ball State University, Muncie, IN 47306, USA. ' Department of Information Systems and Operations Management, Ball State University, Muncie, IN 47306, USA

Abstract: Business schools are often criticised for teaching students high-level theories while providing very little project-based experience. Employers are seeking employees with knowledge not only of business concepts and theories, but also experience in applying theoretical knowledge to a hands-on, project-based experience. The authors have addressed this complaint by building a cluster computer that was used as a multidisciplinary instructional tool to provide students a hands-on learning opportunity. Beyond its use in an MIS course in clustering techniques and applications, the cluster was used an a multidisciplinary instructional tool in other business courses. Such courses include networking, programming, introduction to MIS, security, statistics, artificial intelligence, advanced database, system analysis and design and other areas. This paper presents details of cluster computing and how cluster computing as a multidisciplinary instructional tool could be exploited to provide students with hands-on learning opportunities. The analysis suggests that the experiment had a positive impact on student learning.

Keywords: cluster computing; business curriculum design; Beowulf; course development; high performance computing; multidisciplinary instruction; student learning.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIL.2004.004882

International Journal of Innovation and Learning, 2004 Vol.1 No.3, pp.253 - 262

Available online: 13 Jul 2004

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