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Title: Accessibility through a Hybrid Educational System: A Case Study
Authors: Yahya, Adnan
Keywords: Educational technology;Electronic data processing - Develeoping countries;Computer-assisted instruction;Technology - Social aspects;Information technology
Issue Date: 9-Aug-2003
Abstract: In this paper we study the interesting attempt at computerizing academic life at Birzeit University in Palestine. The experience maybe unique in many ways: in that the decision to switch to Internet-centered education was forced by political circumstance to circumvent the inaccessibility of the (physical) campus; in that the transition was fast and without adequate preparation especially in as far as student/staff training is concerned; in that it took place in a developing nation environment with severe limitations on computer equipment and Internet bandwidth; and in that the goals of the experiment were still being defined at the time when the system was deployed. The experiment is in its infancy and needs continuous monitoring and evaluation. However, even at this stage it is clear that it helped substantially improve and better utilize the information technology infrastructure at the university and its surrounding, resulted in an educational system accommodating diverse practices that constitute an adaptation of multiple technologies to the limitations of a resource poor environment as well as higher awareness on part on the university community of the potential and limitations of information technology in general and its educational uses in particular.
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