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CIDE-SEM: A Technology-driven Model for Collaborative Interactive Distance Education in Science, Engineering and Management Rahul Banerjee Computer Science & Information Systems Group Coordinator: Centre for Software Development Assistant Dean: Distance Learning Programmes Birla Institute of Technology & Science, Pilani (Rajasthan) India Home page: http://www.bits-pilani.ac.in/~rahul/ E-mail: email@example.com
A brief description of the CIDE-SEM model of technology-driven learning Issues and Challenges involved The I2L methodology as a basic building block of the BITS-Virtual University project The BITS-VU Test Run Experience Credibility aspects Sufficiency aspects Privacy aspects Economic aspects Collaborative aspects Availability aspects Authenticity aspects Security aspects Interaction Points: But before that ….a Ten-step plan for growth follows ….
Stage-1: Identification of Areas of Development of Web-based Courseware Stage-2: Identification of Resource Persons Stage-3: Formation of Subject-Area-Specific Core Groups out of Identified Resource Persons Stage-4: Formation of Subject-Area-Specific Blind Reviewer Panels for Quality Assurance Stage-5: Framing a Generic Framework for Collaborative Content Sharing Stage-6: Avoiding Duplication of Efforts by Planned Courseware / Technology Development Stage-7: Deciding on a Reasonable Timeframe for Courseware / Technology Development Stage-8: Deciding on a Reasonable IPR and Revenue Sharing for Courseware / Technology Development Stage-9: Deciding on a COL-Like Development Model Stage-10: Deciding on a Work-Assessment-based Reward Policy A Ten-step Plan for Growth: Quick Summary
BITS-VU In a Nutshell • The BITS Virtual University is a small step in the direction of making Distance Learning effective, interesting and fun. • It has many entry points. The principal entry point is the BITS-VU secure Website. • The VU web site has news group and e-mail discussions lists for helping the instructor to communicate asynchronously with students in their understanding of concepts / issues / recent advances / exercises etc. as well as for allowing students to communicate with each other in an effective way.. • In order to enable synchronous communication between the instructor and the students, the shared whiteboard application is used.
Complementary Components of the BITS-VU • IP-based Desktop Video-Conferencing facility as well as Video-on-Demand features are gradually being integrated into the BITS-VU as other synchronous and asynchronous learning aids respectively. • BITS is closely working with the European Union’s NGN-I project for developing the v6 versions of these technologies. • The site also contains an on-line student assessment application which allows students to take some tests on-line and submit them electronically.
IBM Lotus Domino Application Server IBM Visual Age for Java version 3.5, Oracle D2K Lotus LearningSpace version 4 IBM DB2 version 7.5, MS SQL Sever, Oracle 8i Lotus Notes Adobe Photoshop, Image Ready Macromedia Authorware Shockwave Flash Microsoft Front Page, MS Visual Interdev, IBM WebSphere Real Stream Audio Player ASP, JSP, PERL, Servlet, Java Beans At the Front End and Back End • Toolset: A short list
On the Server Side • Windows 2000 Server running on five local and two remote Server Class Multiprocessor Systems (IBM Netfinity 7100 included!) at BITS-Pilani, Wipro Bangalore and Wipro Hyderabad. This is soon to be extended to include Wipro-CTS Chennai as well! • Lotus Domino Application Server • IBM DB2 Universal Database version 7.5 • Lotus LearningSpace 4.0 • Real Audio Server • Collaboration Room Server
On the Client Side • Pentium-III / IV or higher with 128 / 192 MB RAM recommended (P-200 with 32 MB RAM is the minimum configuration.) • Windows 2000 / XP Workstation recommended (Linux / Solaris / SCO Unix versions can use only partial features of the courseware at present; plug-ins being developed.) • Java-capable Web browser (MS IE 5.x, Netscape Communicator 6.x, Sun Staroffice 5.2 or higher) with recommended Plug-ins • Multimedia support with a headphone / speaker • Good Internet / Intranet Connectivity (multi-speed support)
Other Technologies at Work • Agent Technology • Stationary • Mobile • Proactive and Reactive Multi-Agent Systems are being developed for the BITS-VU • Stanford JATlite and IBM Aglet Technologies have been used for different purposes • BITS-VU site is gradually being WAP-enabled so as to be able to offer select low-bandwidth and less graphics-intensive services to the mobile students on their hand-held WAP devices. • Cluster-based Automatic Load-Balancing Tool is being developed for improved performance over the Net.
Current Status Select ongoing sub-projects of this initiative at BITS: • Learning Aids • Virtual Laboratory • Course Management Tool • Online Assessment System • Instructor Shelf • IP-based Video-on-Demand • Desktop Video-Conferencing A complementary project on BITS Digital Library has begun six months back.
Digital Signal Processing Engineering Mathematics OOAD Satellite Communication Software Architectures Overview of E-Business Accounting and Finance Internetworking Technologies Fourth Generation Languages Microprocessors Introduction to Systems Electronic Devices Circuit Theory Principles of Management Design and Analysis of Algorithms Financial Management Control Systems DBSA Operating Systems Computer Networks Network Programming Introductory Biotechnology Electromagnetic Theory Courses likely to enter the various phases of Testing Current Status ...
The BITS-VU Quality Assurance System • Pre-Content Acquisition Phase (Limited to a closed group) • Post-Content Acquisition Phases • IntraBITS Test-Bed Phase (Open to all registered students and faculty on-campus) • External Blind Reviewing Phase • Pilot Testing Phase • Beta Testing Phase • Release and Feedback Phase
Our Major Collaborating Partners • I B M : Through Tata IBM supports the back-end development environment • M I T : Through its seed money catalyzed the initial phase of courseware development • Distance Education Council : Through a grant for multimedia courseware development and an establishment of a digital video studio has come to help BITS for developing quality video courseware • CISCO Systems: Through its generous grant of its IP/TV product range has helped VU to acquire the complementary synchronous technology of desktop videoconferencing and asynchronous technology of video–on-demand. • EC’s NGN-I