Last Updated: June 28, 2005
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ICT Research & Training

Maximizing the Benefits of ICT/Multimedia for Education in the South Pacific

The research titled "Maximizing the Benefits of ICT/Multimedia in the South Pacific: Cultural Pedagogy and Usability Factors" was started to determine how Educational ICT/Multimedia can be developed so as to be responsive to the particular needs of the region, and to apply these findings to produce a model Educational Multimedia project such as an interactive CD-ROM or website.

The report concludes in a nutshell, there is a need for educational multimedia to utilize vernacular languages, examples and metaphors, and to provide avenues for further customization by staff and students. It also states that we must not assume group-oriented learning activities are the best solution for all students. Nevertheless it suggests that individual multimedia activities can be designed to take advantage of the beneficial aspects of group learning by providing multiple perspectives, as well as a degree of "e-anonymity" (such as email or virtual peers) to encourage questions from reticent students more comfortable with indirect modes of questioning. Educational multimedia developers must also create complements to the long texts that dominate most students' learning materials, providing information in a variety of more concise, visual formats, as well as audio voice-overs.

This research generated a lot of interest nationally and some interest internationally as well. Locally there was a number of media coverage, in the USP Beat and in the local Fiji Times (6/3/05). Mr. Robbins was also invited to present his findings on 23rd August 2004 during the PacInet 2004, a Conference organized by the Pacific Islands Chapter of the Internet Society (PICISOC) in Vanuatu. From 12th to 13th December 2004, Mr. Christopher Robbins was invited by United Nations to the Power Users of Information and Communication Technology Summit in New York to present a paper titled "Harnessing power users' skills to create culturally-relevant educational technology in the South Pacific".