Using the Internet in international educational activities: A case study

abstract | author | presentation | paper

Integration of Web-based courseware and other specialized applications for communication via Internet provides new technological opportunities for education across international borders. This paper will describe instructional activities and outcomes in organizing an educational project between students in the U.S. and Croatia. In this project students of library and information science from both countries collaborated in five small groups via Internet to complete an assigned research task. The research process required students to use various means of synchronous and asynchronous communication provided within the Web-based courseware Prometheus, such as email, file exchange and chat. The research outcomes were presented in the form of real-time student presentations at three locations in the U.S. and Croatia, using MS NetMeeting. After providing an overview of the project the paper will discuss the organizational and technological challenges involved in organizing an international educational activity on the Internet. In particular, the paper will address issues such as cultural and pedagogical differences, and logistical problems resulting from difference in time zones and difference in technology access. The concluding part of the paper will propose a number of strategic issues for organization of international, educational activities on the Internet involving students and faculty members from Croatia and participants from other countries.

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