Document (#33200)

Author
Díaz, P.
Title
Usability of hypermedia educational e-books
Source
D-Lib magazine. 9(2003) no.3, x S
Year
2003
Abstract
To arrive at relevant and reliable conclusions concerning the usability of a hypermedia educational e-book, developers have to apply a well-defined evaluation procedure as well as a set of clear, concrete and measurable quality criteria. Evaluating an educational tool involves not only testing the user interface but also the didactic method, the instructional materials and the interaction mechanisms to prove whether or not they help users reach their goals for learning. This article presents a number of evaluation criteria for hypermedia educational e-books and describes how they are embedded into an evaluation procedure. This work is chiefly aimed at helping education developers evaluate their systems, as well as to provide them with guidance for addressing educational requirements during the design process. In recent years, more and more educational e-books are being created, whether by academics trying to keep pace with the advanced requirements of the virtual university or by publishers seeking to meet the increasing demand for educational resources that can be accessed anywhere and anytime, and that include multimedia information, hypertext links and powerful search and annotating mechanisms. To develop a useful educational e-book many things have to be considered, such as the reading patterns of users, accessibility for different types of users and computer platforms, copyright and legal issues, development of new business models and so on. Addressing usability is very important since e-books are interactive systems and, consequently, have to be designed with the needs of their users in mind. Evaluating usability involves analyzing whether systems are effective, efficient and secure for use; easy to learn and remember; and have a good utility. Any interactive system, as e-books are, has to be assessed to determine if it is really usable as well as useful. Such an evaluation is not only concerned with assessing the user interface but is also aimed at analyzing whether the system can be used in an efficient way to meet the needs of its users - who in the case of educational e-books are learners and teachers. Evaluation provides the opportunity to gather valuable information about design decisions. However, to be successful the evaluation has to be carefully planned and prepared so developers collect appropriate and reliable data from which to draw relevant conclusions.
Footnote
Vgl.: http://dlib.ukoln.ac.uk/dlib/march03/diaz/03diaz.html.
Theme
Computer Based Training
Elektronisches Publizieren

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