An Evaluation of the Informedia Digital Video Library System at the Open University

Kukulska-Hulme, Agnes; van der Zwan, Robert; Dipaolo, Terry; Evers, Vanessa and Clarke, Sarah (1999). An Evaluation of the Informedia Digital Video Library System at the Open University. Journal of Educational Media, 24(2) pp. 131–136.



The past decade has seen the evolution of physical educational resource collections into digital libraries, a process which has opened up a whole new range of uses beyond the traditional ones of reference and individual study in a fixed location. It is becoming more common for institutions of learning to regard their teaching and learning resource materials as important assets that can be shared, incorporated into new courses and accessed remotely by students. With the inclusion of multiple media (text, video and audio), the potential of digital libraries is further enhanced. Early adopters of this technology are information specialists and authors of learning materials, and in some cases, students. Evaluations of digital libraries that are currently underway at various institutions are aiming to determine whether the technology is usable and cost-effective. We also see a focus on the kinds of learning activities that can be supported with digital resources and the best ways of organising and describing them. The evaluation described in this paper is primarily concerned with issues of usability and identifying potential areas of use. A planned second phase of the project will delve more deeply into costs and benefits for users in specific contexts of use.

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