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March 1, 2002

Measuring Success: Evaulation Strategies for Distance Education After some introductory remarks, provides a good description of several stages of evaluation, including formative and summative evaluations. A nice chart of summative evaluation categories and data sources is presented. The article also looks at evaluating outcomes - a good thing - and addresses implementation concerns. A short sample scenario rounds out this five page magazine article in PDF format. By Barbara Lockee, Mike Moore and John Burton, EDUCAUSE Quartlery Number 1, 2002.[Refer]

Google: Search and Browse Mail-order Catalogs Online How long before Google does this for online course offerings? By , , .[Refer]

Standards Follow Practice, They Don't Lead The point of this article is to argue that standards follow practice. The author makes a useful distinction between three major effects of standards: "primary effects of standards are the changes brought about in the things being standardized; secondary effects of standards are changes made to things closely related to but not directly dictated by the standards; and tertiary effects are changes that come about in things not directly affected by the standards but rather as an unanticipated change because of the existence of the standard." But the main conclusion is just wrong. The width of railways, for example, is derived from the width of horse-drawn carriages, as the author correctly observes. But the width or horse-drawn carriages was established by fiat by the Roman Emperor to facilitate the construction of roads. The same is true of other standards: you can't build the products, much less use them, until you have established what it is you will build. By Henry Lichstein, TaskZ, Undated.[Refer]

Online Technical Writing: Examples, Cases, & Models Teaching people different types of technical writing? You would be hard pressed to find a better online resource than this nice guide. Try the frames version - the highlighting is an innovative touch that uses frames the way frames should be used. By David McMurrey, , .[Refer]

Screen Presentation Tools: Tools for Creating Screen or Online Presentations The title is a little redundant, but this comprehensive guide to prsentation tols is not. Covering everything from LaTeX to WML, this guide provides sample code and screenshots. The author offers his own opinions of the pros and cons of each format and links to the format home page. The site is updated on a regular basis. By Michael Wiedmann, , 2001, 2002.[Refer]

Control & Creativity: The Future of Ideas is in the Balance Another longish excerpt from Lawrence Lessig's "The Future of Ideas," this one expanding on the fundamental meaning of "free" content: "So deep is the rhetoric of control within our culture that whenever one says a resource is 'free,' most believe that a price is being quoted - free, that is, as in zero cost. But 'free' has a much more fundamental meaning - in French, libre rather than gratis, or for us non-French speakers, and as the philosopher of our age and founder of the Free Software Foundation, Richard Stallman, puts it, 'free, not in the sense of free beer, but free in the sense of free speech.'" By Lawrence Lessig, Gilder.Com, February, 2002.[Refer]


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