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 London Metropolitan University

A group of staff at London Metropolitan University from the Department of Computing, Communications and Mathematics and the Learning Technology Research Institute started to develop learning objects in 2002. A set of learning objects was developed as part of a project to help tackle a significant educational problem: the teaching and learning of introductory programming. There were two primary concerns in the design of the learning objects: they should be pedagogically effective, and they should be maximally reusable.

There is some controversy over the term 'learning object'. Each learning object we developed is characterised by being a cohesive learning resource focused on one clear learning goal. Our learning objects have been developed for basic programming in Java.

The project has developed:

The learning objects have been used by over 1,000 students in two academic years at London Metropolitan University, and also at Bolton Institute of Higher Education (who joined us on the project). In the first year there were marked improvements in student pass rates, which were largely sustained in the second year. Their use has been thoroughly evaluated.

A web site has been created that gives information about the project, examples of the learning objects developed, evaluation data and published research papers: Learning Objects for Introductory Programming web site

The Learning Technology Research Institute conducts research into the application of information and communication technologies to augment, support and transform learning. Most of our work is in learning objects and learning designs, learning interaction and networked communities, and informal eLearning. We also have a number of externally funded projects.

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