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eLearning Dialogue for Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Wed., May 26, 2004




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CMS Viewpoint

The Case for Online Coursepacks and eBooks

Barry W. Birnbaum
Northeastern Illinois University

While most universities offer online courses, the need for creating support materials that go with these courses remains an area for further exploration. Most instructors use chat rooms, PowerPoint, etc., to deliver instruction. One of the areas that is sometimes overlooked is the development of online textbooks or electronic course packs that go along with the online courses.

In order for an online course to be truly digital, all aspects of it must be converted so that the student has similar experiences within this delivery system. Although some individuals feel that a traditional textbook is more appropriate, the difference in look, feel, and quality is almost the same when electronic books are adopted. Students have an option of downloading and printing the electronic materials or of just reading the material while connected to the Internet.

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CMS News & Product updates

University of Florida Doubles eLearning Enrollment

eLearning usage at the University of Florida has doubled every year since 2000, with more than 75,000 student seats in 1,300 courses. WebCT Vista will enable the institution to further scale its eLearning programs by growing its distance-learning program and hosting eLearning services for partner campuses. (WebCT)

Northcentral Technical College Expands Online Courses for Credit

Business and IT professionals can receive credit toward certificate or associate degree programs by completing SkillSoft’s course combinations. More than 800 SkillSoft courses are eligible for Northcentral Technical College academic associate degree credit. (Skillsoft)

Online Learning System Can Increase Exam Pass Rates

An online learning program developed by a Scottish university can improve exam pass rates by almost 10 percent, an independent study has shown. The study, funded by the Scottish Executive, also found that the eLearning program was so popular with students that they effectively use it behind their teachers' backs. (The Herald)

Extended Learning and Distance Learning Unite

The College for Distance Learning teams up with the School for Extended Learning and the School for Online Learning to facilitate and broaden the non-traditional learning environment with up to 8,200 enrolled students. (Z-Wire/Sun News)

Classical Finally Cracks the Internet

It was, in short, a musical video conference, held over the Internet. Not just your regular home Internet but Internet2, the next generation, with enough broadband capacity to transmit huge quantities of data, including CD-quality sound and DVD-quality images, at as much as 250 megabytes per second (more than 4,000 times the rate of a standard dial-up modem; more than 800 times that of a cable modem). All this can happen in several schools at once. (cNET)
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Southern Cal Offering 'Smart Oil' Degree

Coloradans will be able to receive a master's degree from the University of Southern California's Viterbi School of Engineering in "Smart Oilfield Technologies" - ways to maximize recovery of oil and gas deposits, the university said. USC is offering the master's degree program this fall, and Coloradans can receive the degree, while working in the industry, through USC's distance learning network. (Distance Education Network)

As Laptop Use Rises, So D'es Virtual Note-Taking

Dartmouth's much-touted wireless computer network lets student use their laptop computers all over campus -- in Novack Cafe and on the middle of the Green, as well as in the classroom. These capabilities permit students to use their laptops in class not just to take notes, but also to send e-mails and instant messages and browse the Internet.(The Dartmouth)
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WebCT Expands Service and Support Offerings for eLearning Technology

WebCT expanded its service and support options, introducing the new WebCT Vista Standard Hosting Solution and 24 x 7 Student and Faculty support for all customers. The WebCT Vista Standard Hosting Solution enables customers to take advantage of the industry's premier academic enterprise system without supporting the technology infrastructure themselves. Students and faculty at institutions subscribing to the WebCT Vista Standard Hosting Solution need nothing more than Web browsers to use WebCT Vista's advanced pedagogical, content management, branding and reporting features. To further support student and faculty needs, WebCT now offers affordable new options for 24 x 7 Student and Faculty Support for both WebCT Vista and WebCT Campus Edition.

Distance Learning Purchases on the Rise

DirectView has received multiple purchase orders from educational organizations. Responding to increased demand from the Distance Learning marketplace, DirectView has created an internal division focused solely on marketing DirectView, Inc.'s products and services to the distance learning marketplace. As a result the company has received purchase orders from the Albuquerque Public Schools, Joliet Township High Schools, Barry University and Educational Services, Inc. These orders represent approximately $250,000.00 in purchase orders in the last 90 days.

The 'Tick Is Up' for the Nation's Oldest Distance Learning MBA Program

As the distance learning market has been maturing, the country's oldest independent study MBA program has enjoyed a surge of momentum. Enrollment in the iMBA, the Martin J. Whitman School of Management's distance MBA program for mid-career and executive students, has grown by 27 percent in 2003-04.

CMS Case Study

East Carolina University Chemistry Laboratory Preparation

The creation of an online Chemistry laboratory preparation Web site at East Carolina University was a collaborative project between faculty members in the Chemistry Department, the Harriot College of Arts and Sciences’ Instructional Technology Consultant, Director and staff of the University Multimedia Center, and the Coordinator of the Center for Faculty Development.

East Carolina University is one of 16 constituent campuses of The University of North Carolina. In 2003-2004 it enrolled 21,756 students and employed 1,463 faculty members. ECU offers baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral degrees in the liberal arts, sciences, and professional fields, including medicine.

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CMS TechNotes

The Open University Monitors and Protects Its Networks

The Open University, a provider of distance learning to 200,000 students, purchased etrust Vulnerability Manager, a patch and vulnerability technology, which helped the company monitor and protect its networks. For Jamie Slee, technical analyst at The Open University says Computer Associates (CA) reduced the number of hours it took the university to determine what needed to be patched and to apply the patches.

When the Sasser worm broke out, Slee says CA informed him of 148 potentially vulnerable machines, four of which were not patched. Working with CA, The Open University was able to patch three and take one off the network before the worm hit.

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CMS Exchange
From the Reader Response Forum
Response to CMS? LMS? (April 28, 2004)
Posted by: slepstein

Steve raises a good point about the added benefits that accrue from a fully utilized LMS when compared to a simpler CMS. But the folks at EauClare seemed to focus on cost savings, not features. Perhaps someone from the school would post a note indicating what they feel they will be getting for the extra $1.3 million they plan to spend. And also indicate where they will be getting content to fill the CMS/LMS system. (Or do they expect to fill the system with the volunteer efforts of the faculty?)
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Sponsored By:
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Spend five days expanding your knowledge of the latest technology for higher education at Syllabus2004, July 18-22 in San Francisco and on the campus of UC Berkeley. During a special day-long visit to Berkeley you'll hear from some of the leading scholars on technology in education, including Kristine Hafner, Ph.D., on the role of IT at the University of California in turbulent times; Gary L. Baldwin, Ph.D., on the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS), and Mark Kubinec on teaching with streaming media and electronic individual student response systems, to name a few. Register by June 18 and save up to $200.

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Syllabus eLearning Dialogue is a bi-weekly electronic complement to Syllabus, the only monthly magazine that focuses exclusively on the use of technology in higher education.

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