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automotive suspension and steering systems-fourth edition classroom manual

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Thanks to the support the Today’s Technician TM series has received from those who teach automotive technology, Cengage Delmar Learning, the leader in automotive related textbooks, is able to live up to its promise to provide new editions of the series regularly. We have listened and responded to our critics and our fans and present this new updated and revised fourth edition. By revising our series regularly, we can and will respond to changes in the industry, changes in technology, changes in the certification process, and to the ever-changing needs of those who teach automotive technology.

 The Today’s Technician TM series, by Cengage Delmar Learning, features textbooks that cover all mechanical and electrical systems of automobiles and light trucks (whereas the Heavyduty Trucks portion of the series does the same for Heavy-duty vehicles). Principally, the individual titles correspond to the main areas of ASE (National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence) certification.

Additional titles include remedial skills and theories common to all of the certification areas and advanced or specific subject areas that reflect the latest technological trends. Each text is divided into two volumes: a Classroom Manual and a Shop Manual. Unlike yesterday’s mechanic, the technician of today and for the future must know the underlying theory of all automotive systems and be able to service and maintain those systems. Dividing the material into two volumes provides the reader with the information needed to begin a successful career as an automotive technician without interrupting the learning process by mixing cognitive and performance learning objectives into one volume.  The design of Cengage Delmar Learning’s Today’s Technician TM series was based on features that are known to promote improved student learning.

 The design was further enhanced by a careful study of survey results, in which the respondents were asked to value particular features. Some of these features can be found in other textbooks, whereas others are unique to this series. Each Classroom Manual contains the principles of operation for each system and subsystem. The Classroom Manual also contains discussions on design variations of key components used by the different vehicle manufacturers. This volume is organized to build on basic facts and theories. 

The primary objective of this volume is to allow the reader to gain an understanding of how each system and subsystem operates. This understanding is necessary to diagnose the complex automobiles of today and tomorrow. Although the basics contained in the Classroom Manual provide the knowledge needed for diagnostics, diagnostic procedures appear only in the Shop Manual. An understanding of the basics is also a requirement for competence in the skill areas covered in the Shop Manual. A spiral-bound Shop Manual covers the “how-to’s.” This volume includes step-by-step instructions for diagnostic and repair procedures

Photo Sequences are used to illustrate some of the common service procedures. Other common procedures are listed and are accompanied with line drawings and photos that allow the reader to visualize and conceptualize the finest details of the procedure. This volume also contains the reasons for performing the procedures as well as when that particular service is appropriate. The two volumes are designed to be used together and are arranged in corresponding chapters. Not only are the chapters in the volumes linked together, but also the contents of the chapters are linked. 

This linking of content is evidenced by marginal callouts that refer the reader to the chapter and page that the same topic is addressed in the other volume. This feature is valuable to instructors. Without this feature, users of other two-volume textbooks must search the index or table of contents to locate supporting information in the other volume. 

This is not only cumbersome but also creates additional work for an instructor when planning the presentation of material and when making reading assignments. It is also valuable to the students; with page references, they also know exactly where to look for supportive information. Both volumes contain clear and thoughtfully selected illustrations, many of which are original drawings or photos specially prepared for inclusion in this series. This means that the art is a vital part of each textbook and not merely inserted to increase the numbers of illustrations.

The page layout, used in the series, is designed to include information that would otherwise break up the flow of information presented to the reader. The main body of the text includes all of the “need-to-know” information and illustrations. In the wide side margins of each page are many of the special features of the series. 

Items that are truly “nice-to-know” information include simple examples of concepts just introduced in the text, explanations or definitions of terms that will not be defined in the glossary, examples of common trade jargon used to describe a part or operation, and exceptions to the norm explained in the text. Many textbooks attempt to include this type of information and insert it in the main body of text; this tends to interrupt the thought process and cannot be pedagogically justified. By placing this information off to the side of the main text, the reader can select when to refer to it.