Since the turn of the century, the major efforts in Canada such as eduSource and LORNET were focused on the computer science aspects of the learning object repository paradigm, solving standardization problems, building federated search capacity between repositories, building the first repositories and using them on a limited scale. Now that the technical infrastructure is mostly in place, there is a number of learning objects repositories that contain a critical mass of learning objects that can be harvested by international organizations like Globe. Here, we will summarize the participation of CICE researchers, students and professionnals to this international effort.
Learning Object Projects
Our team has developed its expertise through a number of projects. The first one was SavoirNet an Inukshuk funded project that enabled building a first repository and a Web portal integrating a small number of video resources from the Quebec Education Channel, Canal Savoir. Between 2002 and 2004, we joined with other Canadian project in the CANARIE funded eduSource project where one of the first federated search engine in the world was developed and the CANCORE learning object metadata profile was created. Our role in this project was to integrate tools from the other partners and to develop the first versions of the LOMPAD and PALOMA repository managers. Next, we built and directed the LORNET research network, a large project from 2003 to 2008 where repository research focused on the use of ontologies and the Semantic Web. More recently, we have built IDLD, a portal and a repository of learning designs to support the IMS-LD specification, and also Quality4Reuse, a Wiki and a repository on best practices and a methodology for learning object repository. Finally, we are involved as the Canadian representative on the GLOBE consortium that federated repository networks around the world and also in another related international project, LODE, to implement new interoperability technology for learning object repositories.
Learning Object Repositories
We have built or help develop several Learning Object repositories that are in the process of being integrated into the GLOBE harvesting functionnalities. Most of them are availaible through the REA-UQ portal (in particular collections of resources in mathematics and in learning methodology), the eduRAFAEL portal (in collaboration with the University of Moncton) and in our own PALOMAWeb respositories that group resources from LORNET, IDLD, Q4R and our other research projects at the LICEF Center and the CICE research chair.
Leaning Object Tools
The tools we have developed provide functionalities to manage learning object repositories: referencing resources with metadata, federated and harvesting search in multiple repositories, management of users and access rights, structuring of the repository etc. The first was LOMPAD, which has been provided on sourceforge. It is an open source tool that has been certified by softmedia and downloaded more than 6000 times. The PALOMA Java applet and the PALOMA Web versions are described in the Tools and Methods section of this Web site.
GLOBE (Federation of Repositories)
GLOBE (Global Learning Object Brokering Exchange) is a consortium of learning object repository providers and brokers around the world to which we participage and have been one of the founders. See its GLOBE description and make a federated search.