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Introduction to

E-Learning Technologies

Prof. dr. Paul De Bra


Dr. ir. Natalia Stash

Presentation Outline
What is & Why E-learning?

E-learning technologies: where?


@ Information
Systems
Section
of Mathematics
& Computer
Science Dpt.
@ TU/e

About Me
Russia, Saint-Petersburg State Electro-Technical
University, 1999
Engineer diploma
Development of the distance learning server for
studying of artificial intelligence
Russia, Saint-Petersburg, 1999-2001
Projects
IDLE (Intelligent Distance Learning Environment)
Distance Learning Course on Business Planning

About Me
The Netherlands, TU/e, 2007
PhD thesis
Incorporating Cognitive/Learning Styles
in a General-Purpose Adaptive Hypermedia System
The Netherlands, TU/e, 2001 until now
Projects
AHA! (Adaptive Hypermedia for All)
GRAPPLE (Generic Responsive Adaptive Personal
Learning Environment)
CHIP (Cultural Heritage Information Personalization)

What is E-Learning?/
Some History Facts
Distance education dates to at least as early as 1728,
when the Boston Gazette printed an advertisement from
Caleb Phillips, teacher of the new method of Short Hand,
that offered
any persons in the country desirous to learn this
Art, may, by having the several lessons sent weekly
to them, be as perfectly instructed as those that live
in Boston.

What is E-Learning?/
Generations of Distance Education
1840s: Stenographic Short Hand by
Isaac Pitman,
through written & print materials

End of 1960s: Multimedia distance education


through print materials, radio and TV
broadcasting, cassettes, computers e.g.
PLATO (computer system)

Q: What is missing in these forms of distance education?

What is E-Learning?/
Generations of Distance Education
1970s: Computer-mediated communication
through email, teleconferences,
growing use of Internet

Why E-Learning?/
Online Course vs Textbook
physical

local
uniform

Why E-Learning?/
Online Course vs Textbook
paperless
global
possibly adaptive

Popular Tools for E-Learning:


Learning Management Systems
WebCT (Course Tools) or
Blackboard Learning System,
now owned by Blackboard Inc.

Universities Worldwide Offering E-Learning


Top universities offering e-learning:
The Open University, UK
University of British Columbia, Canada
Pennsylvania State University, USA
University of Florida, USA
Walden University, USA
to add more ...

Dutch Universities
Offering E-Learning
Open University
http://www.ou.nl
Collaboration between

www.elevatehealth.eu
Fontys University of Applied Sciences
http://www.fontys.nl

E-Learning @ TU/e
CoffeeDregs: Visualizing programs
http://wiki.netbeans.org/CoffeeDregs
DiagNow - an interactive lecture-response system
Escom-Method a multimedia guide through a
knowledge area
peach - for assignments evaluation
peach3.nl

E-Learning @ Information Systems Section,


Mathematics & CS Dpt., TU/e
Specialization in Adaptive E-learning
Software for developing adaptive applications:
AHA! (Adaptive Hypermedia Architecture)
GALE (Generic Adaptive Learning Environment)
The first adaptive online thesis

Adaptive E-Learning &


Adaptive Web-Based Applications in General @IS
IS scope is not limited to e-learning:
AHA! and GALE are general-purpose tools for
various types of adaptive applications
CHIP demonstrator - personalized museum guide
based on Semantic Web Technologies

Ideal Adaptive Teaching


Master - Apprentice >
Tutor - Student (Learner)

One Size Does Not Fit All

Adaptive E-Learning
Consider adaptation to:

knowledge

goals & tasks

cognitive/learning styles
/ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

Adaptive E-Learning
Most commonly used types of relationships between
course topics:
knowledge propagation
prerequisites
A is a prerequisite for B, means:
You should study A before B or
You should study A before you can understand B

Example Created with AHA!:


Presentation for Visual+Global Learner

Example Created with AHA!:


Presentation for Verbal+Analytic Learner

Example Created with AHA!:


Inferring Preference for Image vs Text

Step 1

Step N

Image

Text

Image

Step 2

Text

Image

Text

...

Step N+1

...

Text

Example Created with GALE:


Course about MilkyWay

/ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

Example Created with GALE:


World of Biomes

/ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

Example Created with GALE:


World of Biomes

/ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

Example Created with GALE:


World of Biomes

/ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

Example Created with GALE:


Latex Tutorial

/ Department of Mathematics and Computer Science

Example Created with GALE:


Research Methods Book

Example:
C# Online Tutorial

Example:
C# Online Tutorial

Example:
C# Online Tutorial

Example:
Course About Tennis

Designing an Online Adaptive Course


Consists of:
1. Designing information structure (domain model)
2. Information creation (application content)
3. Defining navigation structure (application content)
4. Defining pedagogical structure (adaptation model):
Which navigation is desirable during learning?
An adaptive system such as AHA! or GALE should
support navigation

/ Department of Computer Science

Example:
Milkyway Information Structure
The logical structure
of Milkyway
Different relationship
types result in links in
the application

Parent

Milkyway

Eta Carinae

Produces

Star

Nebula

Rotates Around

Sun

Planet

Is Planet Of

Mars

Earth
Is Moon Of
Moon_Earth

Phobos
Deimos

Moon

Example:
Milkyway Pedagogical Structure
Adaptation can be
supported by Artificial
Intelligence

Parent

Milkyway

Eta Carinae

Produces

Star

Nebula

Rotates Around

Sun

Planet

Is Planet Of

Mars

Earth
Is Moon Of
Moon_Earth

Phobos
Deimos

Moon

Authoring Adaptive Application:


Domain Model

Authoring Adaptive Application:


Application Content/XHTML Page Using GALE Syntax
<h2>Authoring AHA! Applications</h2>
<p>Creating AHA! applications involves four main steps:
writing <gale:a href="pages">pages</gale:a>,
creating a <gale:a href="domainmodel">conceptual
structure</gale:a> of the application,
defining the <gale:a href="rules">adaptation rules</gale:a>
<gale:if expr="${rules#knowledge}&gt;50">
<gale:block>
<gale:a href="rules"> (event-condition-action rules)</gale:a>
</gale:block>
</gale:if>, and defining the <gale:a href="layout">look and
feel, or layout</gale:a> of the application.</p>

Authoring Adaptive Application:


Adaptation Model

Prerequisites Structure
Different ways of creating prerequisites structure:
Top-down (deductive) approach
from abstract to concrete concepts
Bottom-up (inductive) approach
from concrete to abstract concepts
Adaptive systems allow for the implementation of
different prerequisites structures for one course to
address individual learners preferences

How to Realize Prerequisites


You should study A before B
should: different adaptation techniques either
enforce this or give advice
study: this can be access or read or take a test;
result is a knowledge value
how much knowledge is enough?
before: this does not imply just before

Conclusions:
Applications Developed With AHA! and GALE
Adaptation to address individual differences
Adaptation through prerequisites
Various prerequisite structures are possible for the
same course
Time estimation for authoring an adaptive online
course (TU/e master students who followed
Adaptive Systems course) - 10 to 25 hours

Use of Semantic Technologies in E-Learning


In software, semantic technology encodes
meanings separately from data and
content files, and separately from
application code
In computer science and information
science, an ontology formally represents
knowledge as a set of concepts within a
domain, and the relationships among
those concepts. It can be used to reason
about the entities within that domain and
may be used to describe the domain

Use of Semantic Technologies in E-Learning


Previous examples do not (yet) make use of
semantic structures defined in ontologies
==> amount of reasoning over semantic structures
is limited
Next, we will see how to make adaptive applications
based on semantic structures from CHIP project
Although CHIP prototype is a recommender system,
a personalized museum guide, it can also be seen
as an e-learning application - teaching about Art

Use of Semantic Technologies in E-Learning:


Ontologies Mapping

Ontology A:
#Rembrandt

Ontology B:
#Rembrandt van Rein

Ontology C:
#Rembrandt
Harmensz. van Rein

ULAN vocabulary
(Union List of Artists Names)
http://www.getty.edu/vocabularies/ulan#500011051

Use of Semantic Technologies in E-Learning:


Reasoning Example

part of
(stored)

NorthHolland

Amsterdam
part of
(deduced)

part of
(stored)

The
Netherlands

Cultural Heritage Information Personalization,


CHIP: a Personalized Museum Guide
Developed in collaboration between
TU/e, Telematica Institute and Rijksmuseum
Personalized access through multiple devices
PC, iPhone, etc.
Recommendations are based on:
metadata about artworks & art topics
http://www.chip-project.org

CHIP Data

CHIP Web-Based Tools


Art Recommender

Artworks and Concepts


Recommendations

Tour Wizard

Managing and Visualizing


Museum Tours

Interactive User Modeling

Mobile
Museum Guide

Guiding the user


inside the museum