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Research at TECFA

Information & Communication Systems

(under construction since oct 27 1997, but still not finished, some projects remain undocumented)
"Information & Communication Systems" cover a set (of often exploratory) activities that lay the groundwork for other research themes. Some of these technologies are used within our teaching and communication infrastructure, some are taught in our MSc MALTT, Master of Science in Learning and Teaching Technologies.

Flexible tools for socio-constructivist learning

DUAL-T (2006, -)
This project aims at investigating how ICT can support experienced-based and project-based learning scenarios to improve the integration between school and workplace knowledge and skills.
DUAL-T Project Page
Eteach-Net module on project-oriented teaching and learning (nov 2004- nov 2006)
There is a short short overview page and related open contents can be found in EduTech Wiki(en).
Project-based teaching (1999 - )
In particular, see Vivian Synteta's Master Thesis on EVA_pm: Design and Development of a scaffolding Environment For Students projects
The SEED Project (2001 - 2003)
This was a larger European 5th Framework project. See the overview page and the TECFA SEED Portal

Multi-User Virtual Worlds

The Virtual Library / EUN WP 12 Project
[Project completed]
The TecfaMOO Project
This project is still alive in 2002, although on low priority. We still use the MOO as internal non-obtrusive communication tool and we recently migrated an enCore Xpress interface that is being used sometimes by school classes.
The TecfaMOO project has been started as a small informal project in the fall of 1994. Currently we have been using MOO technology as non-obtrusive internal CMC tool for social, teaching and research purposes. In addition we have been using our MOO as research medium/object in the area of Distributed Cognitive Systems. Some subjects covered:
* Virtual Meeting Spaces for researchers and other professional communities (e.g. the VDML/MOO Project)
* Tutorial support for class-room teaching and/or distance teaching
* Collaborative work & social grounding (e.g. the Bootnap project and various student projects)
* The MOO as learning environment for introductory programming, see MOO Education at Tecfa.
* MOOs with school kids: See for example the Pangea project.
Interactive VRML
The potential of Interactive Multi-user VMRL Environments has been investigated between 1997 and 1999, e.g. within the Staf-2x course. See our VRML Project Page for some more details. Note: We also have a few master theses on Navigation in 3D worlds and an other on the use of navigation artifacts. [needs to be documented]

Related Resources (developped at Tecfa)
TIE - Technologies Internet et Education (Slides used in technical teaching)
The ToolBox (a set of technical pointers)
MOOs: the Educational VR page (MOO/MUD biased)
VRML: VRML 2 Pointers (mostly technical with a multi-user bias)
Interactive Cyberspace: Kaspar's Cyberspace Pointers

Virtual Campuses & Tools for Distance Education

This is also a teaching subject in our STAF master's diploma.

After an evaluation of various available systems, we decided in 1999 to develop our own virtual campus. The main reason for this decision was that most existing software is some or all of "student-management", "course delivery" and "quiz based". Our interests are more biased towards "virtual worlds" and "interactivity". This project has been given up 2 years later.

For our own teaching we use a variety of tools, e.g. in 1995 it was PostNuke, Dokeos, Moodle, basic Web Pages, etc. Within the SEED project we did develop framework for activity-based teaching that we also use internally and about three Ph.D thesis build up further this line of work. In 2008, we use Moodle, Portals, Wikis and various on-line web services.

(Some) related resources pages at TECFA
EduTechWiki (en)
EduTechWiki (fr)

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