ERIC Number: EJ854009
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Reference Count: 0
One Course, One Web Site--Of Course? Maybe Not!
Cohn, Ellen R.
EDUCAUSE Quarterly, v27 n2 p6-7 2004
Colleges and universities increasingly employ commercial Web-based course management systems (such as Blackboard and WebCT). How is it, then, that these institutions unquestioningly allocate a unique Web site to each class? Why establish one Web site for one course when other options provide so many benefits? Why isn't there a clamor for information systems that can accommodate multiple purposes and audiences and provide life-long continuity throughout the many phases of educational, professional, and personal pursuits? Single-course Web sites support traditional academic protocols, wherein institutions assign specific dates, physical classroom space, times, and participants (students and faculty) to each "class." Multi-purpose Web sites move beyond the concept of "one course, one classroom, one time slot." In this article, the author advocates for integrated, multi-purpose course Web sites. An even greater challenge is to enable users to enjoy integrated and long-term access to their prior educational experiences, accomplishments, and works-in-progress. The author therefore proposes that designers of software and information systems, higher education administrators, and instructional designers reach beyond single-course Web sites and multi-purpose Web sites. The goal would be to develop user-centric (versus disposable course-centric or institution-centric) repositories of learner experience and accomplishment that move beyond single-course management to life-long knowledge management. The ideal user-centric portal would provide "grade-school to grave" continuity and accommodate a user's varied and evolving educational pursuits, employment, and intellectual interests.
Descriptors: Integrated Learning Systems, Information Systems, Knowledge Management, Perspective Taking, Classification, Web Sites, Shared Resources and Services, Educational Practices, Cultural Context, Instructional Design, Web Based Instruction, Educational Experience, Lifelong Learning, Interdisciplinary Approach
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A