|Title||The Use of the Internet and World-wide Web in the Development of New Courses|
|Department||Department of Geology, Anglia Polytechnic University, UK|
|Tel.||+44 (0)1223 363271 (Ext.2346)|
|Fax||+44 (0)1223 352979|
The introduction and development of new courses is now seen as an integral part of the strategic plans of most UK HE institutions. Often, this involves little more than minor re-jigging and re-naming of existing courses to take opportunistic advantage of short-lived(?) 'niche markets' (e.g. parts of biology courses become 'food science', physics becomes 'energy in the environment', and so on). Small geology departments have extremely limited potential for this sort of activity, but three years ago it was decided to develop, in collaboration with other projects within the University, some courses in remote sensing in general, and planetary geology in particular. These courses have now run for a full year; they have recruited well and have been favourably received by the students that have taken them.
Resources to teach and support these new courses were virtually non-existent, and had to be acquired with minimal recourse to the University's financial base. That the new courses are now established and working well would not have been possible without apparently cost-free resources available via the Internet and WWW. The support obtained from the Internet/WWW can be divided into three categories:
It is no small advantage that these resources are available not only to lecturers designing and delivering the courses, but also in the self-same way to students taking the courses. The Internet and World-Wide Web are powerful tools which should enable all institutions to offer a greater variety of high quality and up-to-date courses in a diverse range of subjects. Such developments would, under normal circumstances, be prohibitively expensive for most publicly funded institutions.
World Wide Web (WWW)