Technology for Advanced e-Learning
an eLearn2005 presentation by Vladimir Uskov, Bradley University, USA


In 2001-2004, the InterLabs Research Institute at Bradley University (Peoria, IL, USA) hosted the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) CCLI-EMD grant # 0196015 on design, development, and testing of advanced online educational materials (OEMs) in Information Technology (IT) area. This paper describes technical solutions, summaries of users’ surveys and questionnaires, summaries of student and faculty feedback, and project team’s recommendations for developers of streaming media-based learning content and faculty who plan to teach online classes using rich streaming multimedia materials. This paper also presents the author’s views on perspective technologies for e- learning.

Average age of eLearner in the US is 36.9 years old

Braodband Internet is rapidly shifting online learning to the preferred method of continuing education in the US

What technology is best for students?
– I don’t know
– I don’t want to answer this
– Let’s ask students
– whatever is convenient for students, we should develop and deliver
– let’s not put textbooks in the center of this process, let’s truly put the student in the center
– combination: let students select
— some will select synchronous video streaming, some will select CDs-DVDs

I will teach it online and F2F


Sir Winston Churchill: “personally, I am always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.”

Steaming Media for Advanced eLearning
– this is about technologies that are very popular among students
– idea is that if I teach this class in the classroom, we record this and squeeze it on an AVI file (1 hour of teaching = an AVI file of around 12-14 GB)
— 1 hour oc compressed video/audio is .ASF file of 100-120 MB (1000 times of compression)
– students can access same course on CD-ROMS or DVD-ROMS
– 1 semester course is on 3-4 CDs

Bradley University Streaming Media-Based Teaching Technology
– we created our own tool in Nov 1002
– video/audio
– email, bulletin board, chat, whiteboard, videoconferencing, audio conferencing
– text, ppt slides, pictures
– web based animation
– web based programming and simulations

Students postcourse evaluation
– 93% say they like and are comfortable taking online or other academic or training courses using streaming media technologies

After using this, 93% say they want to continue using the technology

Many advantages of streaming technologies
– better interactivity
– they are watching the video
– they can replay any part at any time, they can post questions to the message board, email students or the instructor
– increased marketability: gives students actual experience with videoconferencing, distance education

Challenges for REsearchers and PhD students
– our size is 320×240 pixels
– in some applications we need 1024×768
– so we need a codec that can compress

Streaming Technology to-do list
– new fast codecs to transfer 1024 x 768
– more….

Technology #2: Recorded computer screen technology (web-based hands-on exercises, animations, simulations, games)
– there are LOTS of courses where I should NOT use talking head technologies
– biggest textbook I had was 1400 pages, about 900 pages were photos
– PowerPoint HOE versus Oracle…

Innovative recorded coputer screen (RCS) technology is being widely adapted in computer science courses

Outcomes for NSF grant: created 12 developed streaming media online courses (advanced)
– based on streaming technology and RCS technology
– demo versions are available at

Technology #3: Internet2 technology
– using Internet2 for collaboration
– includes about 200+ US univesities
– 100+GBps = 100,000 MBps Network

– stanford: interactive and simulation based learning environments
– Bradley: Live (synchronous) eLearning (2way interactive video and audio) for courses in screenwriting and…

At Bradley University, they have 300+ faculty but over 275+ online courses semester
– all dorms at Bradley University have connections to Internet2

Unique examples of Internet2 uses
– “Hand Drumming” course taught by Matt Savage from the Univ of North Carolina ant Chapel Hill
– “Screenwriting” course by Hollywood directors, producers, etc. from UCLA

Students meet in studio with microphones, students see the instructor that is remotely located,

Internet2 based to-do list
– need special studios on both sides (video cameras, mics, lights, etc)
– teaching styles need to adapt (interaction with students)
– content (should be adjusted to TV)
– new pedagogy (e-Pedagogy – Dr. Toshio Okamoto, when teaching is based heavily on technology)
– Ethics
– Services

#4 Technology: Mobile Technology (m-Learning)
– by 2006, 95% of smartphones will be connected to the Internet
– performance right now is pretty poor
– 35% of attorneys now using mobile devices, many physicians

PocketPC equipment is very good, voice over IP is great, video window only, acceptable for “talking head” teaching technology
– just receiving of information, no feedback by email

data and video
– right now, no video with synchronized PPT slides and video now
– no advanced web-based simulations
– no great communication features
– almost or entirely not acceptable for courses in math, physics, computer science, IT

Pocket PCs and Head Mounted Display
– will it work for education
– very heavy now: 1.2 pounds now
– in labs this works fine, not great as a deployable technology
– price now is about $23,900 each

To do list
– if you have ideas about how to address this, come be my PhD student, I will find the money for you
– we need 1024×768
– we need at least 512 K outside WLAN hotspots
– Verizon says they will provide 300K over cell phone networks
– instead of 128 MB to 512 MB memory sticks, 2-4 GB at least
– keyboard input: instead of 8-10 words per minute, we need 50 words

mobile devices are NOT ready for advanced eLearning now

Technology #5: virtual reality, augmented reality, scientific virtual labs (Web-based simulations)
– I do not work in this area, but believe there are great prospects here
– demos: waves, BMW, pump, arc demos

Examples of context-aware computing and augmented reality
– this is very popular in civil engineering, architechture

Innovative Technology and Faculty:
– be aware, if you create the best tool, it doesn’t mean faculty will jump into using it
– Roger’s Typology
— 2-3% innovators
— early adopters 10-15%
— 30-35% early majority
— 30-35% late majority
— 12-15% conservator manority

From EM Rogers, Diffusion of Innovations 4th Ed, Free Press, New York, 1995

this is a distribution, and unfortunately it seems to be true (in my university too)
– this is true across institutions

If you ask first year faculty who just arrived / are new
– asked if they plan to use advanced eLearning system again: 97.4% yes
– have benefits received justified the time invested: 94.1% yest
– has adavnced eLearning system met your expectations: 78% yes

Student feedback
– this is the bottom line of my preso
– “select your 5 favorite technologies for eLearning”
– 68% of Bradley students said streaming media also including CD/DVD
– 58% said recorded coputer screen technology (1024,768)
– Internet2: 27%
– Mobile devices like PocketPC: 27%
– 63% favored any mobile devices including laptops
– 24% preferred virtual reality, virtual worlds, 3D animations
– online testing: 76%
– less than 3% said they favor educational audiotapes, VHS videotapes, televised courses

Students want all tests to be on Blackboard to not waste time

Course student acadmic
– no great difference phenomena in distance learning student performance outcomes (Tom Russel, at North Carolina)
advanced eLearning good for convenience and many other reasons

student complaints
– problems with access to high speed Internet
– different levels of computer literacy
– synergy: difficult to work along
– student profile: need to be self-disciplined

This is very hard for freshmen students, those without a lot of experience at higher education courses

National Dissemination of teh Outcomes of the NSF CCLI Grant #0196015
– selected partners get results free
– technology, courseware, digital media studio info, more….

Moderate DV studio equipment: $12-$15 K, Advanced Studio is $50-150K

invintation for all attendees for the International Journal on Advanced Technology for Learning (ATL)

In oct 4-6 2006, CATE-2006 will be in Lima, Peru
– first CATE conference in South America

American Proverb: “The Future Belongs to Those Who Prepare For It Today”

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One Response to Technology for Advanced e-Learning

  1. Wtih the mobile workforce of today continuing to expand and a retiring workforce in many of the western counties, the use of context aware computing could be a technology driver for the just in time training that will be needed. Also knowledge management capabiltlies will also be a significant technology for a more caring, sharing work environement that can respond at speeds that individuals can not.

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