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New methods for teaching Operating Systems principles

Welcome to my Research Blog. Here I will keep you informed about my progress in researching new teaching methods for Operating Systems classes.

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Hans-Georg Eßer

Methods: Evaluating the 4C/ID Model (12.11.2008)

I'm currently scanning literature which covers the 4C/ID (Four Components Instructional Design) model, in particular I am reading "Ten Steps to Complex Learning", by the inventor of the 4C/ID model, Prof. Jeroen J. G. van Merrienboer, see Amazon book entry.

4C/ID focuses on the definition of

  • "learning tasks", which shall be modelled as "whole" tasks that have real-world relevance,
  • "supportive information" (which is fundamental, background information needed throughout the whole learning process and thus provided before the task starts),
  • "just-in-time information" which is presented during e.g. the step-by-step explanation of a procedure that shall be learnt, and
  • "part-task practice" which helps students automatize sub-tasks that should in general not be treated as separate tasks.
For a short introduction, see http://edutechwiki.unige.ch/en/4C/ID.

I want to use this model to structure the elements of an Operating Systems curriculum and see what consequences this application will have for the order of presentation.

[ Pfad: /methods | persistant link ]

Literature: Unterrichten mit Moodle (Kay Hoeksema, Markus Kuhn) (14.10.2008)

Having planned to experiment with Moodle for quite some time, two things came together which made me finally get it going: One of my colleagues at the publishing house I work for put this book on my desk, and I started teaching a new course (on Computer Science Basics) that might profit from a course management system.

So I've read the book which is primarily targeted at school teachers (not University lecturers). Different from many technical books, this one doesn't start with the details of installing and infinitely configuring the last details of the software -- instead the authors show several standard situations that can occur in teaching and explain how using Moodle might help in these cases.

Even when things do get technical there's no need to start downloading and installing -- the publishers, Open Source Press, provide a guest account for a Moodle installation on their webserver which already contains several of the course elements discussed in the book.

This is not a technical book for the Moodle hacker, but it's a gentle introduction to Moodle's concepts, which does a lot to motivate readers to start moodling.

Kay Hoeksema, Markus Kuhn
Unterrichten mit Moodle
Open Source Press; 1. Auflage 2008, 229 pages

[ Pfad: /literature | persistant link ]

Methods: Literate Programming -- Implementing a Round Robin Scheduler (24.08.2008)

Following a suggestion of my doctoral advisor Prof. Freiling, I have read some literature about Literate Programming (see e.g. http://www.literateprogramming.com/) and experimented with the source code of a Round Robin Scheduler that I wrote for my Operating Systems class in the summer term 2008. Here is the full documentation that I developed with noweb (http://www.cs.tufts.edu/~nr/noweb/): sched-rr10.pdf

The noweb source file can be found here (sched-rr10.nw) as well as the bibtex references file lit.bib.

[ Pfad: /methods | persistant link ]

Literature: Learning to Teach in Higher Education (Paul Ramsden) (13.07.2008)

Last week I read a very interesting book about Teaching in Higher Education. The author Paul Ramsden focuses on approaches to learning and differentiates between "deep" and superficial approaches, where the former ones lead to a proper understanding of the topics of a course, while the latter ones only bring separate pieces of knowledge into (short term) memory and do not enable students to see the overall picture or apply those knowledge fragments to new problems in a meaningful way.

Examples in the book are drawn from several fields of academic teaching, including Physics, Statistics, Medicine and Animal Science. Ramsden supports his arguments with references to lots of research papers which have measured the results of using different teaching approaches. An interesting find was that the highest correlation was that of excellent grades and a full agreement with statements such as "The staff are highly concerned in making sure that we understand."

A summary of the book could be: Think what kind of abilities you want to see students develop, what kind of change in the student's understanding do you want to achieve? Then search for ways to help the student make this change. Good teaching is an enabling of good learning.

Paul Ramsden
Learning to Teach in Higher Education
Routledge Chapman & Hall; 2nd edition 2003, 288 pages
http://www.amazon.de/dp/0415303451/; http://www.amazon.com/dp/0415303451/

[ Pfad: /literature | persistant link ]

Dagstuhl 2008 (internal workshop) slides (30.06.2008)

Here are the slides this document is in German language of my talk at the PI1 Dagstuhl seminar in June/July 2008.

[ Pfad: | persistant link ]

Status Report 04/2008 (29.06.2008)

I've put my first status report 04/2008 online.

[ Pfad: /status | persistant link ]

Note that some documents on this site are only available in German language. They are marked with a German flag .

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