Engineering e-Learning Systems

Volume: 2011, Issue No. 2

Date: April 2011

Guest Editors: Ignacio Aedo-Cuevas, Kinshuk, Demetrios G. Sampson, Antonio Sarasa-Cabezuelo, and José-Luis Sierra-Rodríguez

Contents: Download the full issue here

Download: Monograph | UPgrade European NETwork | CEPIS News

In this issue 


The papers included in this section are related to a new discipline called “Engineering e-Learning Systems”. The concept of e-Learning is becoming increasingly important for training purposes in schools, universities and businesses, and as the number of e-Learning systems grows it is essential to adopt efficient and disciplined approaches to maintain the quality of these systems. The papers included in this monograph consist of various examples and opinions that illustrate the main scientific, engineering and management values that are needed for the systematic development of e-Learning Systems. Download

UPgrade European NETwork

This section includes papers from two different CEPIS Member Society publications in Italy and Spain. The first paper from ‘Mondo Digitale’ by Associazione Italiana per l'Informatica ed il Calcolo Automatico (AICA) is about Green IT. This paper describes the experience of the Italian company ENTER, in the ENERG-IT project which aimed to rationalise the level of resources used and optimise energy consumption in data centres. The second paper from ‘Novática’ by Asociación de Técnicos de Informática (ATI) in Spain consists of an interview with two “visionary entrepreneurs” who have organised a youth movement. Download


Read about how you can help develop an ICT Professionalism framework in Europe by taking the ICT Professionalism survey by early June. CEPIS is undertaking a pan-European project, funded by the European Commission on ICT Professionalism & e-Skills and needs your help! The CEPIS Green ICT Taskforce have also just launched a new Green ICT survey aimed at ICT Managers across Europe, and we bring you an update about last year's CEPIS Women in ICT Award runner-up. This section also includes the full 'CEPIS Cloud Computing Security and Privacy Issues' statement which provides 15 recommendations on measures that should be taken to deal with the risks and privacy invasion factors of cloud computing. Download



Learning in the Information Society: New Approaches, New Tools

The introduction is written by the five guest editors of this issue of CEPIS UPGRADE; Ignacio Aedo-Cuevas, Kinshuk, Demetrios G. Sampson, Antonio Sarasa-Cabezuelo, and José-Luis Sierra-Rodríguez. Read about how and why the topic of "Engineering e-Learning Systems" was chosen, and a brief description of each paper included in the monograph is also included.  Download

e-Learning System Engineering and Standardization Efforts: A Case Study Concerning Learning Object Repositories

Nowadays, the use of e-Learning systems transcends the purely academic field, as it spreads to all aspects of our modern Knowledge Society. Therefore, the adoption of systematic development, implementation and maintenance methods for the construction of this type of systems is rapidly arousing great interest and gaining in importance. In addition to facilitating interoperability, the use of recommendations, specifications and standards that regulate the different aspects of e-Learning systems are also mandatory to facilitate and systematize the development of such systems. Through a case study involving a representative class of such systems (Learning Object Repositories), this paper illustrates how specifications and standards constitute a key aspect of e-Learning System Engineering. Download

PDP Systems for Audiovisual Educational Content: Development of a Solution for the Universidad de La Laguna

This paper presents an analysis of the different systems of production, distribution and publishing (PDP) of multimedia content in Spanish universities. We analysed several similar solutions in order to design and implement a PDP for the Universidad de La Laguna (ULL) and finally we selected two representative ones as models: POLIMEDIA for the production phase and PuMuKit for the distribution and publishing phases. The paper also presents the PDP system developed, called ULLMedia, which makes it possible to embed videos from other existing public platforms. ULLMedia also allows the integration of the teaching materials produced in the University with other services of the Virtual Teaching Unit. In particular, it enables the integration of ULLMedia contents with the virtual campus, which is based on Moodle, and with UDVBlogs, a platform based on Wordpress-MU. Download

Component Reuse in Synchronous Collaborative Web 2.0 Applications

The concepts and technologies that define Web 2.0 have revolutionized and extended collaboration assisted by computational systems. Recent developments in new technologies make it possible to represent, in a Web environment, elements that are common to face-to-face collaborations. The Web environment is formed by synchronous collaborative multimedia applications with rich interfaces using the Web as a platform. The authors’ experience in projects in the domain of synchronous collaborative applications has allowed the identification of a complex and broad domain with many commonalities. This paper presents a software component reuse approach for synchronous collaborative Web 2.0 application development. It describes the construction of such components as well as an approach to reuse software by taking advantage of a shared architecture and components library to aid domain developers. Download

Communication Patterns in Component-Based Intelligent Tutoring Systems

Design patterns are reusable solutions to recurrent problems. Generally described in the context of object-oriented programming, only a few contributions can be found in the domain of eLearning in general or Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITS) in particular. Based on several approaches to describe the systems’ underlying architecture in terms of pattern collections, we have developed a component-based framework. This framework provides a foundation for the development of flexible and reusable ITS. It also provides a basis for the development of other eLearning systems. Still, the complexity of the inter-modular communication requires experience and self-discipline from the programmer. Thus we investigated the framework for additional patterns. We extracted useful communication patterns and integrated them into an editor. Patterns and editor are presented in this paper as they have already proved themselves very useful regarding programming efficiency and consistency. Download

Intelligent Tutoring Systems with SCORM

The research community in the field of Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITSs) have persistently confirmed that an ITS can increase learning outcomes and assist the educational process. The advances in state of the art of tutoring systems have constantly improved over the years. However, it is still hard to find an ITS outside academia, and one of the main reasons is because tutoring systems cannot be loaded in different platforms or Learning Management Systems (LMSs). This interoperability issue is an important shortcoming, since nowadays most of the electronic educational content comes from artifacts that can be loaded into LMSs (like PDFs, PPTs or HTML content). The main objective of this paper is to describe our approach for solving the interoperability issues of ITSs using the SCORM e-Learning standards. Our approach will be conceptually described and implementation aspects will be exemplified using a prototype. Download

e-Learning Services in Moodle 2.0

The unstoppable advance of new technologies has made evident the need for updating learning platforms. This update is based on the incorporation of new functionalities in order to satisfy the changing users’ needs. One of the ways to carry this out lies in the evolution of learning environments into a Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA). The implementation of these architectures will allow the creation of clients and external tools that can work with the resources contained in the platform, giving users a freedom of movement that they did not have before. Moodle 2.0 is an example of this evolution and this article presents some of the new possible applications. Download

A Practical Case of Agents and Services Integration in e-Learning Environments by means of Tuple Spaces

The use of e-Learning standards and distributed service-oriented architectures which provide for the reuse and integration of components introduces the concept of a component-based development process in the implementation of e-Learning systems. This concept enables the development of tools that make use of the synergy effect created by the integration of the different components. This article will show our implementation proposal which follows an approach based on tuple spaces for the integration and communication of distributed heterogeneous components, and makes use of a user environment which implements the corresponding Eclipse plug-ins. As an example, we will show several applications integrated under our approach, which facilitate the continuation of the teaching/learning process in subjects related to programming algorithms. Download

Towards Adaptable e-Learning Services Invocation: Application to Navigation and Fishing Simulator

Many companies aim to use Web services to integrate heterogeneous and/or remote application in SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) contexts. The SaaS (Software as a Service) economic model allows the linking of service consumption and pricing. We aim at considering e-Learning as a set of services, hosted according to cloud computing techniques. Moreover, we propose a solution to adapt tutoring content according to context, based on a specific commercial product. Download

A Pervasive e-Learning Design Methodology

A methodology to design innovative pervasive learning scenarios is essential since pervasive learning is a very innovative field and most pedagogical designers and teachers are unaware of its key concepts and utilities. Such a methodology requires radically new thinking about how and when using new mobile and pervasive technologies can enhance learning and teaching. We can present the challenges of designing pervasive learning on three levels: (1) the proposition of a modeling language; (2) the specification of a design process; and (3) the development of a supporting tool. Our research seeks to provide solutions at all three levels and proposes an innovative pervasive learning design methodology that aims to support pedagogical designers and teachers to model, generate and simulate pervasive, context-aware and adaptive learning scenarios. Our methodology is model-driven, iterative and incremental. Download

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