Research Assistant: Hyperfolio Bedford/St. Martin’s

Research Assistant: Hyperfolio Bedford/St. Martin’s

Developed by Mike Palmquist of Colorado State University from software created by Learn Technologies, Research Assistant Hyperfolio (RAHF) is an innovative approach to web research. RAHF provides users with a “collection icon,” a small, colorful button that appears on the browser screen. In the simplest terms, the icon is akin to a folder into which a student might put the results of a session surfing the web for source material. In reality, though, the icon is the first step in a highly evolved solution to writing research papers. Users can capture anything found on the web—including texts, images, video files, and audio files—by dragging-and-dropping it into the collection icon. The software then generates a Note Card that prompts students to complete three necessary research steps: take notes; record bibliographic information; and evaluate the source for relevance to the project. The software automatically adds the URL.

In the second step of the research/ writing process, students take the various note cards, now compiled into one data set, and outline a paper or presentation using the Worksheet feature. Again using drag-and-drop, or point-and-click, students organize and string together the appropriate material, pulling from the left side of the Worksheet (the note card information) to the open page on the right. The screen looks much like the split screen displayed when one calls up a web search “history” in one’s browser.

The software will, on request, generate a complete bibliography in MLA, Chicago, or APA format. Students can work with multiple note cards and multiple worksheets simultaneously for an array of organizational options. RAHF is available as a stand-alone product and also comes bundled with The Bedford Researcher, a text/CD-ROM/web site product from Bedford/St. Martin’s.

Contact: Bedford/St. Martin’s, Boston, Mass;
(800) 779-7440; www.bedfordstmartins.com/.

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