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Improved Web-based Pedagogical Tools

In a preliminary evaluation of the Classroom 2000 lecture-capture tools at McGill, several shortcomings were identified. These included (a) inability to annotate and record a lecture delivered using the full capabilities of a PowerPoint presentation, (b) lack of post-lecture interaction between students and instructor, and (c) inflexibility of the system to support student use for recording and delivering mini-presentations.

Identification of these issues led to the implementation of a number of additional tools. First, the Transparent ZenPad interface for annotating a PowerPoint presentation within the Classroom 2000 system, was developed. This tool obtains slide number information from PowerPoint and allows the user to write directly overtop of any slide. All inkstrokes are then saved with the lecture.

Second, an interactive Previously Asked Questions interface, embedded within each lecture, was developed. While reviewing a lecture on-line, students may peruse questions pertaining to any slide, or submit new questions of their own at the click of a mouse button. Instructors or TAs can respond to these questions, with the question and answer then forming an integrated component of the lecture.

Third, a modified version of the standard ZenPad interface was devised, tailored to the needs of a student mini-presentation. This system includes a timebar, indicating the amount of time remaining, and permits multiple recordings and reviews of the presentation until the student is satisfied with the result.

J. Yeong, H. Agha, J. Luo, H. Nasseridin, O. El-Sharif, J. Cooperstock

Annual Report

Mon Jun 26 21:22:20 GMT 2000