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Development of the Russian Full-functional Distant Learning System

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Development of the Russian Full-functional Distant Learning System with Make Use of Internet/Intranet Technologies

Tech Area / Field

  • INF-COM/High Performance Computing and Networking/Information and Communications
  • INF-SOF/Software/Information and Communications

Status
3 Approved without Funding

Registration date
10.08.2000

Leading Institute
CAD Systems Research Center, Russia, Moscow

Collaborators

  • PTC International, Inc./Moscow Representative Office, Russia, Moscow

Project summary

The Project objective is to Develop the Russian Full-functional Distant Learning System (DLS) with make use of Internet/Intranet Technologies.
Distant learning (DL) via Internet/intranet retains the advantages of traditional learning while eliminating its drawbacks. DL is particularly topical in Russia due to its vast territory and remoteness of many regions from learning centers. DL is not in conflict with the established regular and correspondence learning systems, but integrates with and develops them to the effect of creating a mobile learning environment.
DL via the Internet ensures permanent interaction and intensive exchange of information between student and tutor across any physical distance. Flexibility is another advantage, which allows the student to independently schedule his classes off work and within his residence area.
DL via the Internet/Intranet in any science or discipline including video- and teleconferencing, chats and e-mail.
Many foreign universities and training centers use DL in their education and training programs, but these DLS don’t approach to Russian education conditions. The drawbacks of foreign DLS are: high prices, high necessity need amount of computer resources, don’t supporting all required functions, interface in English.
On the other side, Russian DLS’s don’t support all required functions, need further technical and methodical development, and thus couldn’t be recommended for wide use.
As a result, the development of the Russian Full-function DLS has emerged as a pressing necessity.

The project is expected to result in the following:
- development of a test version of DLS customized for Russia;
- development of a server-based distant testing system;
- development of course design applications for Internet/Intranet learning by minimally skilled PC users;
- development distant lab equipment and use of computer simulators system.

These goals having been reached, educational institutes and centers for additional education will get up-to-date programming package and thus will benefit from distant learning via Internet multifunctional system.

Integration of this DLS into education will allow:
- in scientific field - attract more scientists into R&D through giving them an access to rare or unique laboratory equipment;
- in social field - deliver courses to a larger number of regular and by-correspondence students, improve quality of education, cut students and institutes educational costs;
- in economic field - rise commercial education centers’ profits;
- in production field - improve personnel training and advanced training, rise the number of trained specialists, cut training costs and eliminate expenses for training missions, involve the effective method of studying technical documentation.
The local market research revealed high demand for Russian DLS as well as concern for the solvency of potential clients.

Development and subsequent introduction of the DLS into economics will give a good chance for:
- scientists and specialists working in this Project to get a good job with future progress;
- other scientists and specialists engaged in R&D and production of weapons to get retraining and use their skills in civil field;
- scientists and specialists engaged in R&D and production of weapons to deliver high-qualified specialized courses being a long distance away from profile educational institutes;
- CIS scientists to integrate into the world academic community;
- scientists to carry out their non-military fundamental and applied R&D with the remote access to rare and unique laboratory equipment;
- reinforcing the transition to market-based economies responsive to civil needs.

The term of project is 9 months. The Project includes the following tasks:
- elaboration of Russian DLS concept;
- draft of technical plans for the significant subsystems;
- development of software and technical solution;
- elaborate the program and method of testing;
- testing the system.

The results of the Project fulfillment shall be reported at the conference «Information technology in education».

Cooperation with the foreign collaborator is aimed at creating lab equipment interfacing unit.
The role of the foreign collaborator in the project will be :
- to provide information support;
- to perform testing and appraisal of hardware and software developed under the project, approach to perform of technical documentation in electronic form;
- to hold joint workshops about working with distant lab equipment and use of computer simulators.

Technically and methodologically the development process of DLS is based on project method, which is known as «from top to bottom», piding all scientific and technical personnel for special groups and following principles:
- comprehensive set of DL functions, automation of course designing;
- user friendliness;
- minimal PC configuration requirements;
- significant role of tutor in the training process;
- wide range of tutor-student interaction capabilities;
- full record-keeping;
- compatibility with standard hardware and software;
- scaling capability;
- further development capability.


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ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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