ERIC Number: EJ744897
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Sep
The Interface Design and the Usability Testing of a Fossilization Web-Based Learning Environment
Wang, Shiang-Kwei; Yang, Chiachi
Journal of Science Education and Technology, v14 n3 p305-313 Sep 2005
This article describes practical issues related to the design and the development of a Web-Based Learning Environment (Web-LE) for high school students. The purpose of the Fossilization Web-LE was to help students understand the process of fossilization, which is a complex phenomenon and is affected by many factors. The instructional design team faced the challenge of designing an environment that could enable its users to construct knowledge actively by manipulating the various variables of organisms, ecological systems, and physical burials. An effective user interface is essential to the enabling of students who try to explore knowledge presented in the learning environment and who, in monitoring their own learning progress, hope to avoid overwhelmingly complicated content. The analyses of both the interaction of learning activities and the design of system functions are discussed. In addition, a usability test was conducted so that the effectiveness of the interface design could be examined. The findings reveal that target users are satisfied with the usability of the Fossilization Web-LE and consider use of the user interface to be easy. At the end, several practical applications in the design of instructional software's user interface are suggested.
Descriptors: Computer Interfaces, Web Based Instruction, Educational Environment, Instructional Design, High School Students, Learning Activities, Paleontology, Ecology, Courseware, Computer Software Evaluation, Computer Assisted Instruction, Educational Technology
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A