Monday, August 01, 2005

Learning Objects

I've been asked a couple of times for the link to the Kanji Quiz and Kana Quiz that I showed briefly on Friday afternoon, so I'll finally post it here. We've been working on this for a couple of summers now, and it seems to have been fairly successful (the kana quiz has been used signficantly by beginning students, and we expect that the kanji quiz will be very useful for more advanced students). Sound is actually implemented fairly well, despite that being a very difficult thing to do in DHTML (I think all somewhat modern browsers except for IE/Mac support it fully). So, please feel free to take a look, practice your Japanese, or see how this sort of flashcard system might be used elsewhere:

Amherst College Kana Quiz
Amherst College Kanji Quiz

Programmatically they're pretty interesting projects as well. We did some bizarre things with innerHTML and JavaScript: PHP writes out a long HTML page based on the type of quiz you want, this page includes inline JavaScript which itself includes a long array of cards, whose entries are HTML, and get switched in and out to mimic flashcards without all the mess of reloading pages. The Kanji Quiz has much cleaner code in every respect, so if you're interested in code, I strongly recommend that you look at that one.

Our Curricular Computing Services group has students work on similar projects every summer, so there are others I could perhaps show you if you're interested (just let me know). Many of those students just get used for slide-scanning or faculty website development, so there aren't as many as I'd like, but nonetheless. I think it's a pretty interesting use of technology: it's really exciting for me, anyway, to see technology implemented such that it really helps the learning process (which has not always been the case in the past).


Blogger Alex Wales said...

you there - i stumbled (literally) across this semi-scary-sounding speech recognition pitch - thought it might tickle your fancy, even if it's nothing too awfully groundbreaking.

8:42 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Hey, very cool. Foreign language folks were some of the trailblazers in humanities computing at colleges, given the sheer usefulness of being able to see and hear elements of language and culture. Middlebury's ed tech department has done a lot of development in this area, due to demand from the Language Schools. Might find some interesting implementations.

10:24 AM  
Blogger Alexey said...

Hey hey! How's the program going? Have you said all the hellos we talked about?

1:19 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

hey alexey! look at this - cross-generation ASTP goodness. yay. :)

2:38 PM  
Blogger Bryan Alexander said...


Ahem, thanks for posting those links, Nick. :)

3:38 PM  

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