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Helping Mechanical Engineering Students Master Thermodynamics

Thermodynamics can be one of the most difficult courses in mechanical engineering. Your knowledge acquired in thermodynamics is essential for other engineering courses and for the beneficial contributions you'll eventually make to society. We're providing a unique tool that will help you quickly grasp, retain, and master the concepts of thermodynamics. Published research results of our prior online tool for thermodynamics were shown to improve the average exam scores of 120 students by a letter grade and a half higher than the 480 students that did not use the tool. Our latest version, called Pathway, includes the world's first STEM word-problem. The tool can derive the solution path to arbitrary word problems in engineering thermodynamics. This unique engine facilitates highly personalized scaffolding for the first time, which allows students to pinpoint an incorrect step in their very own solution path. The goal is to help students master thermodynamics, improve their quality of education, reduce engineering dropout rates, and hopefully increase the number of students that consider going into STEM by them knowing such a helpful tool will be available for them 24/7 through their web-enabled device (smartphone, tablet, etc.).

A video and tutorial of the Pathway prototype in use can be seen on our VIDEO / EXAMPLE page.


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Pathway Tutorial Software

Many engineering students struggle with the concepts of thermodynamics. It's well-known as a weed-out course, but we hope to change that. The Pathway personalized learning tool provides immediate assistance, whenever you get stuck. Pathway answers questions like: "How do I set up this difficult homework problem, why should I use one relation as opposed to another, what modeling assumptions are necessary, where did I take a wrong turn, or what are possible next steps?" Unlike Office Hours, TAs, or Tutors, Pathway is available 24/7 via any Web-enabled device. And unlike static textbook problems or pdf solutions found online, Pathway allows you to modify textbook problems to explore what-if scenarios or create your own problems. Pathway enables you to practice as much as you need to strengthen your areas of weakness.  

Pathway Tutorial Software

Improve Your Mastery & Grade in Thermodynamics for Less Than the Cost of One Hour of Tutoring Per Month!



Thank you for your interest.  For questions or comments, please use the information listed here.  We look forward to hearing from you.


Hours of Operation
Mon-Fri: 9:00am–5:00 pm EDT

Sugarcube Systems, Inc.
Purdue Research Center
1281 Win Hentschel Boulevard
West Lafayette, IN 47906

Service Area
National / International


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