Pioneering software that enhances teaching and learning has won a national award for The University of Nottingham team that developed it.
Xerte — a powerful suite of freely available online tools — has been recognised by the Association for Learning Technology (ALT) as an excellent example of new technology being used to improve the learning experience for students and staff.
The Xerte project team won ALT’s ‘Learning Technologist of the Year Team Award 2009’, which celebrates and rewards excellent practice and learning in the learning technology field.
The software enables academic staff and students to produce instant online quality content, incorporating multimedia elements like video, audio and pictures whilst allowing for the automatic creation of transcripts and RSS feeds.
The Xerte Project provides a full suite of open source tools for e-learning developers and content authors producing interactive learning materials. It provides an easy way to create sophisticated interactive teaching material that is engaging, stimulating and immersive. Functionality that would be time-consuming to develop from scratch in other tools can be created very quickly in Xerte.
One of the key features that sets Xerte apart from comparable software is a high level of embedded accessibility. Through the support of JISC (Joint Information Systems Committee) TechDis, Xerte Online Toolkits have been heavily promoted and used around the JISC-funded Regional Support Centres for creating inclusive e-learning materials.
Because the software is released on an open source license, there are no restrictions on how it can be used. The members of the Xerte team at The University of Nottingham are: Andy Beggan, Fay Cross, Nuno Jorge, John Horton, Patrick Lockley and Julian Tenney.
Andy Beggan, Learning Team Leader, said: “We are extremely excited and proud to be recognised by ALT at this year’s awards, not least because this represents recognition from our peers.
“The team at Nottingham continually seek to reduce the technological barriers to academic adoption of e-learning through support and new technologies like Xerte Online Toolkits. Therefore, it is especially gratifying to see our efforts bring real benefits, not only in Nottingham, but across the UK and internationally.”
The Association for Learning Technology (ALT) Learning Technologist of the Year Award is now in its third year of operation. The Award is open to individual members of ALT, and to individuals and members based in ALT member organisations.
The awards were presented by Professor Martin Bean, Vice-Chancellor Designate of the Open University, at the Association for Learning Technology’s annual conference in Manchester.
The Xerte team were joint winners of the Team category, alongside the Beyond Distance Research Alliance from the University of Leicester
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