2004 Conference Proceedings

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SUPPORTING LEARNER-CENTRIC TRANSFORMATION OF ONLINE EDUCATIONAL CONTENT - WHAT'S NEW?

Presenter(s)
Laurie Harrison, University of Toronto
Adaptive Technology Resource Centre, University of Toronto
130 St. George St.
Toronto, ON
M5S 1A5
Tel: (416) 946-3778
Fax: (416) 978-7705
Email: laurie.harrison@utoronto.ca

The Adaptive Technology Resource Centre, University of Toronto, is involved in a number of initiatives that aim to advance the accessibility of digital learning resources to a new level, using a learner-centric approach to user interface design. This presentation will showcase several projects that are providing prototypes and specifications for use in development of accessible learning object repositories, learning management systems, and flexible e-content. Each of these initiatives supports transformations of curriculum across multiple contexts, according to the learners' needs and preferences. This presentation will include demonstrations of current projects at the ATRC and an update on new developments in IMS Accessibility specifications.

The Inclusive Learning Exchange (TILE):

The Inclusive Learning Exchange (TILE) Project is developing authoring tools, repository architecture, and preference schema that will respond to individual needs of the learner, with functionality extended to a range of media types used in e-learning. Building upon the work of the Barrierfree project, The Inclusive Learning Exchange (TILE) is establishing a learning object repository service that supports customization during the instructional design phases, as well as creation of profiles to accommodate individual learner preferences. The project aims to demonstrate the potential benefits of personalized courseware for the learner and the impact this would have on the educator or content producer. Through this project we are exploring the practical boundaries of transformable content and the tools needed to support the mastery of learner customizable teaching. The project is taking a leadership role in implementation of protocols and schemas to ensure the inclusive design of! e-learning environments, and provide models that will form the basis of extensions to international specifications, including IMS.

Detailed information about the project is available online at: http://www.barrierfree.ca/tile.

Flexible E-Content Project

The ATRC is also a participating partner in The Flexible E-Content Project, an initiative that focuses on models of reuse for digital content within and across communities of practice. Of particular interest to the accessibility community is the idea of developing digital resources that are "multipurpose," and can be used in a variety of contexts as a result of transformations within new learning technologies and systems. The project addresses transformations of content in the areas of science, art and culture, history and new media literacy. Key to the work of FlexEC is development of tools that create flexible content by separating internal components into content, media, programming, metadata and graphical interface layers. These tools are being built on existing repository infrastructure and inform enhancements to existing technologies.

Information about the project is available online at: www.albertaonline.ab.ca/.

Specifications for Accessible Learning Technologies (SALT)

The SALT project is working with IMS Global Learning Consortium members and experts on distance learning and accessibility to develop and promote open access technical specifications for accessibility of software applications for the e-learning industry. This presentation will also include a description of SALT initiatives undertaken in collaboration with the industry-led IMS working groups on accessibility, identifying the features needed to make on-line learning accessible, and to specify the resources and technologies needed to implement solutions.

The following SALT project initiatives support developers in meeting these goals:

Information about the project is available online at: http://ncam.wgbh.org/salt/index.html and http://www.imsglobal.org/.

Attend this presentation to learn more about initiatives that are providing prototypes and specifications for use in development of accessible learning object repositories, learning management systems, and flexible e-content.


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