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DISTANCE EDUCATION

REPORT
Volume 5, Number 9 May 1, 2001

Defense Technology Fuels Distance Learning:


Talking to the Pentagon’s E-trainer
By Steven Donahue

hat do a computerized firing range for tanks, a mock That’s important, according to Parmentier because, “It’s
W aircraft maneuvering over a simulated battlefield, and
learning a language at a distance have in common?
in the national interest to create a business model that works
on the Net, particularly for distributed education.”
“An amazing amount, in a world that is more complex, Parmentier and others feel that the days when everything
with tools that are more complex,” says Michael Parmentier, was free on the Net must change for there to be valuable and
the Pentagon’s top trainer, who is the Director of Readiness robust learning online.
and Training in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. He Dr. Jerry West, the technical director of the Washington,
was the featured speaker at the spring 2001 Simulation D.C. ADL Co-Lab, who led the SCORM workshop said,
Interoperability Standards Organization (SISO) workshop “Before SCORM, the business model was to never share
in Orlando. The workshop provided a rarefied peek at the code; now content is sharable across conformant platforms.”
blueprint that will drive the web-based learning industry Dr. West predicted, “By May, 2001, online content will be
over the next few years. certified by the ADL initiative, and this could be the fuel
Modeling and simulation are tools used to learn and that may help jump-start the New Economy as it tries to
practice military skills, such as qualifying on a firing range, emerge from its current downturn.”
with the virtual reality power of computers. The savings on
simulated training compared to traditional methods can be
Unprecedented Cooperation
considerable. The SISO convention is the first time that Parmentier marvels at “the unprecedented level of coop-
the worlds of distance education and simulation have for- eration that is apparent in pursuing the goals of distributed
mally come together. Common standards are being sought, learning. Industry, academia, and government are all coa-
that will allow distributed learning and distributed simula- lescing around a central goal.” As the Pentagon’s “training
tion objects to interact through the Department of guy,” Parmentier currently sits at the center of that effort.
Defense’s Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) initia- “At the Washington, D.C. ADL Co-Lab, in a single day,
tive, and other venues in a digital world. Such standards you can see the National Guard, Marines, Navy, Army,
create common ground that will allow the interchange of industry providers, other federal agencies (like Department
SCORM-conformant content over the Internet. (SCORM of Labor), and academics pass through its doors,” he says.
is the ADL’s “Sharable Content Object Reference Model”
continued on page 2
— the basis for establishing international distance educa-
tion conventions.)
Parmentier thinks that, in many cases, today’s learners
and soldiers, “The Nintendo generation,” learn best when
interacting with rich multimedia and simulation. Along with
many other vanguards in the field, he feels that “text and sta-
IN THIS ISSUE
Defense Modeling and Simulation Technology.............1
tic pages are often not the first choice for this generation.
Editorial: MIT Giveaway ............................................2
Instead of going to the library, they prefer to use Internet
search engines such as ‘Ask Jeeves’.” In the Field: Taking A School Online...........................3

Jump-starting the New Economy In the News: Post-Napster Bandwidth Jam...................4

“2000 was the year when the ‘C’ in SCORM was changed Course in Point: Bringing Statistics to Life...................5
to reflect Content; 2001 is the year when that content will Global Village: Brain Oxygen for Latin America...........6
begin to be put in standardized repositories, somewhere in
Resources: Syllabus 2001 Conference............................7
cyberspace,” Parmentier says.
Technology Briefing: New WebCT Platform.......................8
EDITORIAL
It’s the Interaction, Stupid!
s institutions try to figure out how to generate revenue around the world develop new curricula and courses, partic-
A from distance education, the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology has decided to post nearly all of its course mate-
ularly in developing countries that are trying to expand their
education systems.
rials on the Internet, free of charge. Other benefits include serving as a resource for individ-
Although MIT’s initiative is not direct competition for ual learners, serving as a model for other institutions to
distance education — the plan does not offer courses for make similar content available, and stimulating the
credit or any interaction with instructors — it may help shape exchange of ideas about innovative ways to use the
the future of distance education. resources in teaching and learning.
The plan, known as MIT OpenCourseWare, will make The biggest benefit of MIT OCW is the message it sends
available the core teaching materials used in its courses, such to other institutions and potential students: While these
as lecture notes, course outlines, reading lists, assignments, materials are an integral part of the education process, the
and perhaps, videotaped lectures. interaction between and among instructors and students is
Over the next ten years MIT will make available the mate- what makes education.
rials for some 2,000 courses at a cost of $7.5 million to $10 Hopefully this move will raise the bar for educators to
million per year during the initial phase of the project. show them that lecture notes and links to resources should
MIT will not offer these courses for credit. Rather, it will not pass for education. Education, whether it is online or face
make available the course materials worldwide for non-com- to face, only works through an active exchange of ideas
mercial purposes such as research and education. between people. If your program doesn’t provide that, you
According to MIT, this will help faculty at institutions may as well give it away. ●

DISTANCE EDUCATION Defense Technology… from page 1


REPORT

Part of Parmentier’s job is to advise Secretary of


Defense Rumsfeld and his senior staff on all policies, pro-
Distance Education Report (ISSN 1094-320X) is published semimonthly by
Magna Publications Inc., 2718 Dryden Drive, Madison, WI 53704. grams, and budgets for the department’s education and
Phone: 800-433-0499. Copyright © 2001. One-year (24 issues) subscription: $399. training activities. He sets the policy guidelines that impact
Periodicals postage paid at Madison, WI POSTMASTER: Send change of address
to: Distance Education Report, 2718 Dryden Drive, Madison, WI 53704. everything from the Defense Language Institutes to
E-mail: custserv@magnapubs.com; Web Site: www.magnapubs.com
Partner for Peace nations, and our allies. He says,
Vice President: Jody Glynn Patrick
Publisher: Deborah H. Harville (dharvill@magnapubs.com)
“Essentially, when it comes to learning technologies, we
Managing Editor: Rob Kelly (robkelly@magnapubs.com) are seen by all parties as an honest broker, a neutral venue,
Marketing Manager: Thomas Bajek (tombajek@magnapubs.com) and a keeper of the flame for SCORM software.”
Graphics/Production: Susan Hayes Customer Service: Mark Beyer
Parmentier describes the military as “a historic learning
Editorial Advisory Board: Donald P. Ely, Associate Director, ERIC Clearinghouse on
Information & Technology; Chere Gibson, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of institution capable of taking in raw recruits and training and
Wisconsin-Madison; David Giltrow, Independent Consultant, Educational Technology
& Communication, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Darcy W. Hardy, Ph.D., Director for upgrading their skills.” As an extension of that historic
Distance Education, Center for Instructional Technologies, University of Texas at mission, Parmentier’s office now supplies the guidelines
Austin; Joseph Holland, University of Wisconsin-Stout; Marge Jeffers, WTCN
Distance Education Network, Fox Valley Technical College; Marina Stock McIssac, (like SCORM) that, among other things, will help shape such
Educational Media and Computers, Arizona State University; Karen L. Murphy, Ed.D.,
Associate Professor, Texas A&M University; Don Olcott, Jr., VCampus Corporation; key programs as the $600 million Army University Online
Christine Olgren, Ph.D., Chair, Distance Teaching and Learning Conference,
University of Wisconsin-Madison; Todd Price, Ph.D., Executive Director, WYOU
initiative. The service hopes to boost retention by helping
Community Television, Madison, WI; Rick Shearer, MA, MBA, Instructional active-duty Army personnel (90% of the enlisted do not have
Designer, World Campus, Pennsylvania State University; John Witherspoon, Professor
Emeritus, San Diego State University; Linda L. Wolcott, Ph.D., Department of a baccalaureate degree) complete college degrees at a distance.
Instructional Technology, Utah State University.
Parmentier suggests that there have been three learning
To order back issues, call Customer Service at 800-433-0499. Back issues cost $17.00
each ($390 for the previous year’s complete collection), free shipping and handling in revolutions: writing, printing, and digitization. Since
the US. You can pay with MasterCard, VISA, Discover, or American Express. SCORM is a “living document,” no one can know what
This publication is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to
the subject matter covered. It is sold with the understanding that the publisher is not the next 10 or 20 years will bring, “but it will be a learning
engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or environment where even the architects will be astounded at
other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be
sought. Authorization to photocopy for internal or personal use, or the internal or per- how quickly the change occurred.”
sonal use of specific clients, is granted by Distance Education Report for users registered with
the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) Transactional Reporting Service, provided that Steven Donahue teaches English as a Second Language and
10 cents per page is paid directly to CCC, 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923; Pronunciation Online at Broward Community College in South
Phone: 978-750-8400; www.copyright.com. For those organizations granted a license by
CCC, a separate system of payment has been arranged. Florida. He can be reached at <sdonahue@broward.cc.fl.us.> ●

2 May 1, 2001 Distance Education Report


IN THE FIELD
The Art Institutes: Taking A School Online
By Steven Donahue

he virtual teachers at the Art Institute Online (AIO) porations. Online education proponents at AIO have
T gather regularly in Pittsburgh to get real about deliver-
ing AI content over the web. At their most recent meeting,
worked long and hard to make their case. They demon-
strated the value of distance education in research and test-
it was apparent that the Art Institute Internet “war room” ing for the Art Institute Online launch. The school found
for distance education was taking no prisoners. Their mis- that online faculty members develop closer relationships
sion is nothing short of some day delivering every AI class with students, and that student workloads are more intense
in an online version that equals or exceeds the quality of the than in on-ground courses.
face-to-face class. George Pry, president of the Art Institute of Pittsburgh
The Art Institutes, Education Management Corpor- says, “It takes a self-motivated and committed student to be
ation is among the largest providers of proprietary post-sec- successful in online learning.” While research has made it
ondary education in the United States. The Art Institutes easier to argue that learning can in fact be accomplished
system includes 23 educational institutions located nation- online, other issues remain to be hammered out: changing
wide. It has graduated over 125,000 students since it was technologies, glitches, and marketing angles.
founded in 1962, in fields like design, media arts, fashion, Jane McBride, assistant director of distance education,
and the culinary industry. with wide experience in teaching English as a second lan-
The Art Institute Online, formed in 1997 from its par- guage (ESL), is convinced that the future of mass educa-
ent, offers a virtual learning platform for Internet-delivered tion runs through the wires buried beneath cities like
education. It currently hosts online courses leading to a Pittsburgh, and stretching into the world’s classrooms. “In
bachelor of science degree in graphic design, an associate of the physical classroom, teachers are frequently tasked to
science degree in graphic design, and a diploma program in teach pronunciation, without any explicit instructions —
digital design. why can’t it be done better online?” she asks.
The Virtual Team Turning the Corner
Many of the the cutting-edge issues of distance educa- AIO’s five years in online learning has gradually paid
tion were discussed at the AIO get-together. Topics range off. The investment has primarily been in the human capi-
from online relationships with Duquesne University, a few tal that was already within the Art Institute. The internal
blocks away, to interchangeable knowledge objects, to the training has generated a small army of online instructors.
latest version of Flash, to the impact of the web-based AIO is holding steady in the uncertain economy.
Education Commission’s findings on accreditation and Enrollment at the Art Institute Online was up for the
financial aid. spring 2001 semester. Future plans include strategic part-
The story at AIO is typical of a transformation that is nerships, reaching out to foreign clients, and continuing to
happening within many other traditional schools and cor- add core Art Institute courses online.●

Community College Campaign Pays Off


in Dot-edu Designation
t last, some 900 community colleges across the country EDUCAUSE has made it clear that they intend to expand
A get what they have been campaigning long and hard for
— use of the dot-edu domain. The ‘.edu’ suffix had previ-
the use of the addresses to community colleges. EDU-
CAUSE <www.educause.org> and the Department of
ously been limited to four-year colleges. On April 14, the Commerce will work out final details of the agreement over
United States Department of Commerce announced that it the next few weeks. VeriSign, the for-profit company that
would transfer control of ‘.edu’ Internet addresses to had run dot-edu, will continue to assign dot-com, dot-org,
nonprofit EDUCAUSE to serve as the domain’s gatekeeper. and dot-net addresses. ●

Distance Education Report May 1, 2001 3


IN THE NEWS
Napster or Not, Downloads Ann Thompson, the president of SITE (Educational
Jam College Bandwidths Technology Committee) said that one thing is certain about
teachers and technology: “The ‘T’ [in SITE’s acronym] that
he sanctions on Napster’s music downloads are not stands for ‘teachers’ is no longer silent by a long shot.”
T expected to ease the bandwidth problem for some
colleges and universities. According to Joe Ganci, CEO
For information on the Association for the Advancement
of Computing in Education or SITE, go to
of Dazzle Technologies Corp., an Ashburn, Va.-based <www.aace.org>.
web technology firm, the problem will persist. “There are The PT3 web site is available at <www.pt3.org/
many other software packages out there that do the same pt3_grants/>.
thing — and the news gets worse — these packages don’t
depend on a central Napster server, but are free agents
working peer-to-peer.”
UNext.com Recharts and Recharges
Reflecting a typical higher education predicament, Next.com, an online provider of training and education,
Acadia University in Nova Scotia, Canada, reports the
massive downloads are the main culprits slowing down its
U located in Deerfield, Ill., announced a layoff of 13% or
52 of its 390 employees, coinciding with an undisclosed
academic servers. Acadia integrates the use of notebook amount of financing from Thomson Learning.
computers into the undergraduate curriculum. A source Andy Rosenfield, UNext chairman and CEO,
there says, “[There is] a serious bandwidth problem as says,“Phase one of our growth is completed. But lifelong
everyone is online in the classroom and out. … We had to learning is here to stay. So we are adding courses of moder-
put restrictions on frivolous Net usage as the server load was ate duration to meet that demand.”
taxing classroom usage. It turns out that 85% of the load was UNext collaborates with Columbia Business School,
due to gaming and MP3 downloads.” Stanford University, and the University of Chicago
Graduate School of Business to bring education to the glob-
al marketplace through its online learning community,
PT3: No Silent ‘T’ Cardean University.
Peter Stokes, executive vice president of
om Carroll, director of the Department of Education’s Eduventures.com, a Boston-based educational marketing
T PT3 initiative (Preparing Tomorrow’s Teachers to use
Technology) predicted in his keynote speech at the Society
group, said of the news, “UNext has strong financial
backers, experienced management, a very robust product
for Information and Teacher Education (SITE) 2001 offering, and high profile partnerships. By reducing staff and
conference, ”We are moving towards a model where each focusing on core business activities, the firm enhances its
learner will have a personal learning portal that will follow chances of cornering a significant segment of the online
them for life.” executive education market.”
PT3 continues to fuel distance education by working to Bob Christy, president and CEO of Thomson Learning
ensure that tomorrow’s teachers are fully capable of integrat- affirmed Thomson’s faith in the future of e-learning.
ing technology into the classroom curriculum. During the “Global trends and statistics point to the need for distance
first two years of the program, PT3 has awarded a total of education. Our goal is to build a business that is technology-
352 grants to consortia that include colleges of education and based and can support the delivery of learning products and
K-12 schools. Carroll described lessons learned by the pro- services in all forms — from instructor/classroom-based to
gram so far and emphasized that a commitment by campus independent computer-based training.” ●
leadership is critical to the success of educational technology
reform. The program is set to award as many as 75 new
grants later this summer. Share Your Ideas
A room full of nervous PT3 grantees heard Carroll look
into his crystal ball about the impact of the Bush adminis- If you have an innovative distance education
tration. “This is a new administration that is still ramping
up. They need time to put their staffing in place and
course you would like to share with DER
develop plans and program priorities.” He added that the readers, contact Christopher Hill at
education budget that has been submitted provides no details chill@magnapubs.com.
at this point, only broad budget parameters.

4 May 1, 2001 Distance Education Report


COURSE IN POINT
Video Brings Statistics to Life
Fundamentals of Statistics
Created by Anne Barker Another lesson has her on Lake Ontario in a sea kayak
Rochester Institute of Technology talking about estimating the number of fisherman and birds
hen she set out to design a distance version of entering a bay to introduce the idea of sampling.
W Fundamentals of Statistics, Anne Barker, professor of
statistics at Rochester Institute of Technology, wanted to pro-
“I heard from one student who was watching it the first time
around and wondered what I was going to do next,” she says.
duce a course that engaged students with a real-world context. The videos comprise most of the course. They are sup-
Comprised of ten videotaped lectures and online plemented by one- to two-hour-long weekly chat sessions
interaction, the course uses on-location video to illustrate using FirstClass.
statistical concepts.
The course originated with the desire to make it possi-
Limitations
ble for students to complete a master’s degree in statistics According to Barker, the verdict is still out on the
entirely at a distance and to increase student retention. effectiveness of distance education. She recognizes some
Although she had no experience in developing distance limitations and tries to work around them. For instance,
courses, Barker felt compelled to take on this challenge. typing equations using a keyboard is cumbersome, and
“I teach basic statistics, and it became a matter of pride — equation editors are not the same as writing on a black-
I would rather do it than have somebody else do it, but I board. She would like to see software that enables instruc-
didn’t expect to enjoy it,” she says. tors to hand-write equations for online delivery.
As for the video portion of the course, Barker is aware of
The Benefits of Videotape the tendency of the material on the tapes to become dated
She had the option of using a number of delivery meth- with the passage of time. Video courses are also not as easy
ods and chose videotape because most people have access to to update as other types of courses. Although the content of
VCRs and because videotape provides a larger picture than a statistics course does not change as rapidly as in other
current CD-ROM and Internet technology. disciplines such as economics, political science, and busi-
As for the format of the course, Barker was impressed by ness, she was careful to avoid including material that might
the PBS telecourse “Against All Odds: Inside Statistics,” become outdated. Regardless, she plans to update the
which incorporates lectures, film clips, and events outside course every five years.
the studio — an inspired departure from the typical tele-
course comprised of talking heads and overhead projections.
Course Ownership
The result is a series of ten lectures of 30 to 60 minutes Although she developed the course and is prominently
each that include memorable in-the-field lessons. featured in the videos, other instructors also teach the
For example, a lesson about variation includes a video- course. Although she holds the copyright to the videos, the
taped trip to the Greater Rochester International Airport in ownership of the course is somewhat ambiguous. “I don’t
which she interviews a friend about why planes do not think anybody has explored [ownership] carefully, but
always arrive and depart exactly as scheduled. nobody objected to me putting a copyright on it.” ●

VBrick Systems Introduces DVD-Quality MPEG-2 Appliances

V Brick Systems, Inc. offers a line of MPEG-2 network


appliances that provides DVD-quality video across
Model 6000 Series are duplex encoders/decoders used
for interactive conferencing.
Internet protocol and ATM networks. All these models include an integral web browser for col-
Model 4000 Series MPEG-2 video encoders convert laboration over a network. Video sessions are controlled by
analog video to digital MPEG-2 video for distribution over an infrared remote control that allows users to highlight the
digital or computer networks. channel in the on-screen program guide. These appliances
Model 5000 Series MPEG-2 decoders convert digital provide full-motion, 30-frame-per-second, DVD video on
MPEG-2 video streams to analog video that can be viewed a computer screen or standard television.
on standard televisions. For more information on VBrick see http://vbrick.com>.●

Distance Education Report May 1, 2001 5


GLOBAL VILLAGE
BrainOxygen: Management e-Learning
for Latin America
By Steven Donahue

rainOxygen, Inc. (also known as BrainO2) focuses on forestry sector is a great example of an industry that has had
B companies in Latin America, providing them the “oxy-
gen” they need to compete in global markets. The compa-
to vastly increase its ability to learn because of globalization
of the market and new knowledge-intensive practices such
ny is the brainchild of Bill Wescott, a Ph.D. who spent as sustainable development that have become key to
most of his career at Arthur D. Little, Inc., the interna- competitiveness,” Dr. Wescott says. “By providing a new
tional technology and management consulting firm. way to develop knowledge that is often more effective and
As a partner in the firm, Dr. efficient, we can help both large and
Wescott was based in Brazil and small companies as well as support
Mexico, working throughout Latin SBS in carrying out its mission.”
America for over a decade. While “… the value of this Brain)2 has a similar approach for
working with his clients on many other sectors such as mining, metals,
areas that are hallmarks for Arthur technology is much greater energy, telecommunications, and
D. Little such as the “Learning government.
Organization” concept (the sys- for someone in Tierra del Global View
tems thinking approach developed
by management guru Peter Senge), Fuego than in Palo Alto.” To meet its clients’ needs,
sustainable development and man- Brain02 works with a variety of part-
agement training, it became clear ners to develop a customized e-
to him that there is a tremendous learning program that is aligned with
thirst for knowledge in the region. the clients’ strategies. In addition to
“Unfortunately, the educational systems, including the high-tech set of Silicon Valley, their partners include
corporate training programs, have not kept pace with the European and Asian companies. Because they are totally
demand for learning, particularly in the new era of global- driven by client needs, they can’t simply offer a “one-size-
ized competition,” Dr. Wescott explains. “I have a deep fits-all” approach. “We work with the client to develop a
commitment to the region and was looking for a way to plan to best harness the power of e-learning to help them
serve these clients that complemented what was being done implement their corporate strategies, and then help them
at the top management level.” That way, Wescott decided, implement that plan,” says Wescott. “We may need a dif-
was corporate e-learning systems. ferent set of e-learning partners and products to meet the
“I felt that the e-learning area, while still early in its devel- needs of different clients.” The BrainO2 team composition
opment, is at a point in which we can leverage it to help our also reflects the global view of the company, with associates
clients be more competitive. The surprising discovery for me from Europe, North and South America and Asia.
is that many e-learning companies were focused on high tech Latin Venture <www.latinventure.com> named BrainO2
clients in Silicon Valley, seemingly oblivious to the fact that the “Top Latin American Startup” because of its strong value
the value of this technology is much greater for someone in proposition for Latin companies and the abilities of the
Tierra del Fuego than in Palo Alto.” Brain)2 team to deliver on that value proposition.
A Different Business Model Southern Hemisphere Potential
There are some challenges unique to doing business in According to IDC, over half of the almost $300 billion
Latin America. While it is a large potential market, much annual training budget is spent outside the United States.
depends on relationships and in-depth knowledge of the Many observers, including Training magazine believe that the
region. Fortunately the BrainO2. team has extensive growth rate for e-learning in developing countries will be
experience in Latin America and has developed strong even higher than the projected 79% average annual growth
relationships throughout the region. projected for the United States. “Estimates indicate that the
One example of a BrainO2 client is the Brazilian language learning market alone may be $100 to $150 billion,”
Silviculture Society (its Portuguese acronym is SBS), the says Adam Neuman, senior analyst for Eduventures.com, a
industry association for forest products companies. “The Boston-based education marketing firm.●

6 May 1, 2001 Distance Education Report


RESOURCES
Lessons from the Cyberspace Classroom articles dating back to George Washington’s presidency.
“Access to Presidential Studies” will also include
essons from the Cyberspace Classroom: The Realities of autobiographies, office diaries, executive orders from 1862
L Online Teaching, by Rena M. Palloff and Keith Pratt
(ISBN: 0-7879-5519-1W01, Jossey-Bass) is a comprehen-
through 1904, photographs, and images. The web-based
reference will house information from the Office of
sive reference intended to help faculty hone their skills as the President, as well as other sources like the media.
online instructors and for students to use to become more Additional documents will be added during scheduled
effective online learners. Contains numerous examples quarterly updates.
from actual online courses and insights from teachers Users can log on at <http://cisweb.lexis-nexis.com/histuniv/>.
and students. Lessons from the Cyberspace Classroom deals
with the entire online teaching process. It offers
suggestions for dealing with issues such as evaluating
Planning for Faculty Development
courseware, working with online classroom dynamics, lanning for Effective Faculty Development: Using Adult
addressing the needs of the online student, making
the transition to online teaching, and promoting the
P Learning Strategies (ISBN 1-57524-105-6, 180 pages,
Krieger Publishing Co.) by Patricia A. Lawler and
development of the learning community. Kathleen P. King is a guide to help institutions create
faculty development programs in the area of distance
education by using the principles of adult education.
Syllabus 2001 Conference: Technology Chapters include “Becoming a Successful Faculty
in Higher Education Developer,” “Programming for Faculty Development,”
he Syllabus 2001 conference will be held at the Santa “Preplanning,” “Planning,” “Delivery,” “Follow-up,”
T Clara Convention Center (in “Silicon Valley”) July
20-24. The conference will focus on integration and
“Effective Faculty Development in Action.” The book
also includes a faculty development checklist and a self-
implementation of instructional technologies on campus. assessment tool.
Keynote addresses, breakout sessions, case studies,
workshops, seminars, and technology demonstrations
will address fundamentals of technology use and the
Harcourt e-Learning Online Library
practical understanding of how to implement information arcourt e-Learning offers its online library services to
technologies at the classroom, program, and
institutional levels.
H academic institutions for a per-user licensing fee.
It features information in all major subject areas,
Conference content areas will include: new technologies including history, literature, philosophy, business,
and pedagogies; web-based learning environments and education, humanities, health care, and information
support strategies; new institutions, organizational models, technology.
strategic issues, and standards; case studies in teaching and Included in the online library are:
technology implementation; connecting educational • 20 databases that contain journal and magazine
research to practice; and a featured track on Teaching, articles, newspapers, encyclopedias, dictionaries,
Learning, and Technology. College-level faculty, health care information, and public policy reports
department chairs, IT managers, administrators, and media • millions of articles from nearly 5,000 journals and
professionals are encouraged to attend. Visit SyllabusWeb periodicals
at <www.syllabus.com> for more information about • annotated web links for business, computers, arts
Syllabus 2001. and culture, education, entertainment, government,
recreation, and travel
• subject libraries that include journal and magazine
Lexis-Nexis to Offer Web-based U.S. articles, websites, databases, e-magazines, and links
Presidential Information to professional associations.
exis-Nexis recently introduced “Access to Presidential In addition, Harcourt e-Learning Online Library
L Studies,” an online resource for high school and college
students and researchers that will provide historic
includes guidebooks to help with online research,
including How to Use the Web, Evaluating Information
information about all 43 U.S. presidents. Users will be on the Web, Writing a Research Paper, and Citing
able to search and retrieve the complete text of inaugural Electronic Sources.
addresses, State of the Union addresses, and scholarly For more information, visit <www.harcourtelearning.com>.

Distance Education Report May 1, 2001 7


TECHNOLOGY BRIEFING
SM
Mobile Phone Technology Meets tion uses CampusPortal , Premium Campus Gateway, or
SM
Educator®/Wireless Educator® Campus Gateway .
A preview function lets administrators view changes
compass has integrated its Educator®/Wireless before they go live. For more information, visit <www.
U Educator® online teaching and training solution with
cellular/digital phones and pagers.
ecollege.com>.

Using the newly developed Notification Center within


Educator®/Wireless Educator®, students, instructors, and
NetSchools StarClassroom Wireless
teaching assistants can instruct the program to deliver Mobile Cart Solution
course-related information to their mobile phones and/or
pagers at user-specified time intervals.
N etSchools has introduced Netschools StarClassroom, a
wireless mobile cart that combines NetSchools’ online
“The concept here is immediate access to educational curriculum alignment system, NetSchools OrionSM, with
resources and useful data gathered within the online class- EduLAN, NetSchools’ classroom management solution.
room environment,” says Ucompass’s CEO Ed Mansouri. NetSchools StarClassroom is designed to introduce K-12
A few examples of the data delivered to mobile devices students and teachers to integrated e-learning at school by
include updates about discussion board activity, new providing access to computers and the Internet through a
content uploaded into the online classroom, newly formed mobile cart solution, which includes online curriculum
chatroom logs, graded exams/quizzes, and new e-mail alignment and integration, student laptop computers, an HP
messages. Omnibook Notebook PC for the instructor, on-site
For more information, visit Ucompass’s newly developed professional development, and curriculum correlation and
Wireless Educator® website at <www.wirelesseducator. wireless network technical services.
com>. For more information, visit <www.netschools.com>.

Texas Instruments’ Electronic WebCT Introduces Two Editions of its


Flashcard Technology Latest E-Learning Platform
T exas Instruments offers StudyCards™ Creator is a learn-
ing tool that allows students to create electronic
W ebCT has released a Standard and Campus Edition
of its newest e-learning platform, WebCT 3.5.
flashcards that can be used with the TI-Navigator™ wireless According to the company, the Standard Edition is designed
classroom learning system and the TI-83 Plus and TI-73 as a pedagogically sound course platform without extensive fea-
handheld graphing units. tures for scaling or integration with campus systems.
TI has also developed flashcards with Quia.com and Improvements include enhanced performance and capacity;
FreeVocabulary.com for quiz and test preparation in history, improved support for WebCT e-Packs, publisher-provided
geography, science, art, English literature, economics, and content that faculty can assign for use with online courses;
music. enhanced privacy through the ability to hide user IDs; a cus-
The StudyCards Creator flashcard stacks are accessed tomizable sign-on screen; and a weekly view calendar.
through TI’s StudyCards Viewer application, which displays The Campus Edition is designed for institutions to scale
the individual cards on TI handheld devices. their online learning programs and/or integrate their course
For more information, visit <http:education.ti.com>. tools platform with portals and student information systems.
To do this, the product license permits multiple servers and
SM includes additional systems administration support.
eCollege Tool Enables Update of Features include external user authentication using
Campus Content industry authentication standards; turnkey integration with
SM SM
ampus Author , a new tool from eCollege , enables SCT Banner, SCT Plus, and Campus Pipeline; compliance
C administrators to update their online campuses in real
time without having to use HTML.
with IMS open specifications; load balancing, which allows
for use of WebCT on multiple servers; and campus-wide
Campus Author gives administrators 24/7 access to and automatic sign-on.
control of their eCollege online campus whether the institu- For more information, visit <www.webct.com>.

8 May 1, 2001 Distance Education Report