Searching Literature for Technical Key Texts

A literature review is a key part of postgraduate research. To start with I’m attempting a broad literature search to try and find anything I can which sheds light on my topic area. In particular I’m trying to locate some “key texts” which align fairly closely with my planned research area, and could help inform …

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Introduction to my PhD Research

It’s the nature of research, and particularly of doctoral research, that approaches change and details become clearer only over time. With that in mind this is an introduction to the topic area of my research as I see it now, right at the start of the process, borrowing heavily from the proposal document I submitted …

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Lecture Review: “The study of American literature” by Dr Owen Robinson

University of Suffolk holds an annual series of free evening lectures. The first since I started at the university was on the topic of American Literature – not at all germane to my particular research, but potentially interesting nonetheless. Much more appropriate, however, for Kat, who is aiming to take Creative Writing (which includes, of …

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Classroom response systems

A while ago I wrote about th every limited way that many educators use student response “clicker” handsets. Now I read yet another article on the topic. Classroom response systems – elearnspace The thrust of the article is that the use of specialist handsets is limiting, and it considers alternatives such as commodity mobile phones …

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UK universities to lead global e-learning

Apparently there is to be a push to make the UK a world leader in on-line higher education. I’d love to see this happen, but I have my doubts. As with so many other attempts at “e-learning”, the emphasis seems overwhelmingly on “learning and teaching resources”. But this is the easy part of the problem. …

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Details of my MSc proposal

In a few months I will begin “proper” work on the dissertation for a MSc with the Open University. Before starting I needed to choose a topic, so I chose Improved user interfaces for private family wikis. In order to claim this topic, I need to submit a proposal by filling in a form on …

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CLI and Learning Communities

A lot has been written about “wi-fi cities” and “wireless communities”. A variety of projects have been considered around the world, some with more success than others. One thing which seems to have been missing from most of the proposals I have seen is the issue of content. Simply making the open internet available across …

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Choosing a masters topic: Initial thoughts

At the beginning of 2009 I will be starting my MSc research project and dissertation. By then I need to have decided on, applied for, and been accepted for a project topic. Even now the choice is becoming quite tricky. I am studying with The Open University, and the research project and dissertation is module …

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Technology Review: Taking Apart the Livescribe Pulse

This looks like a neat idea – a pen which records both what it writes and what it hears. It’s aimed at people taking lecture notes, but would likely be just as suitable for any other annotated-audio situation such as meeting minutes or the record and replay of spoken games. Of particular interest is the …

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Usability and User-centred design

I find that one of the saddest things about taking an Open University course is that all the work and thought that people put into discussions in the course forums are just thrown away at the end of the course. This seems particularly poor from a learning perspective, as some of the best sources of …

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