Date of Award
Bachelor of Communications Honours
Faculty of Communications, Health and Science
Dr Ron Oliver
This thesis explored the evaluation of informational/educational systems. It investigated the features of the design of an evaluation system needed to conduct the summative evaluation of informational and educational software. In designing this evaluation methodology, several questions were addressed: - What is needed to be achieved from an evaluation? - Which characteristics/features of a system required evaluation? - How was the evaluation going to be conducted? - How can future developers use the information obtained from the evaluation? - What were the scope and the limitations of the proposed evaluation? - How can evaluation tools, techniques and procedures developed by this research, be useful in the design of evaluation systems for similar informational/educational software? To answer these questions an in-depth review of the available literature and electronic resources that address the area of multimedia software evaluation was conducted. In order to identify the best tools to conduct an efficient and effective evaluation it was also imperative to examine and assess tools and techniques already developed. It was then possible to proceed with the design and construction of an evaluation system, based on a thorough familiarity with and understanding of previous work conducted in this area. The EduKit2000 CD produced and distributed by Edith Cowan University to all commencing and external students was selected as a case study with which to implement and test the evaluation system. Because of the availability and the proximity of both the developers and the end-users, it was considered an appropriate choice. The evaluation program developed involved the use of four evaluation tools. These consisted of an expert review, a questionnaire, user and novice testing. The questionnaire was sent out with the CD. The feedback received from the questionnaire was analysed in conjunction with the data returned from the other evaluation tools and the summative evaluation of the CD was conducted, in order to determine whether the product reflected the requirements of its developers. Analysis of the returned research data aimed to discover what future changes may be required to be implemented to the original product in order for it to fulfil those requirements, while still remaining a cost-effective, freely distributed product. More importantly, this evaluation of EduKit2000 was intended as a "road test" of the methodology developed by this research. It made it possible to identify and improve some features of the evaluation plan and strategy that did not perform us well as anticipated. The research conducted for the purpose of this thesis explored the evaluation of informational systems and achieved four distinct objectives: 1. A methodology was researched, designed and developed to comprehensively evaluate informational/educational systems 2. This methodology was tested by using a case study (EduKit2000) to which it was applied. 3. The methodology was evaluated and reviewed, and recommendations were formulated for improvements. 4. A comprehensive evaluation of EduKit2000 was produced, along with recommendations for improving the product. By adequately identifying those areas that can be improved in order for the product to fulfil its objectives, the evaluation system developed by this research was demonstrated to be an effective, and cost-effective, methodology for evaluations of informational/educational software.
Walberg, S. (2000). An exploration of tools, techniques and procedures for evaluating informational/educational multimedia software. Retrieved from http://ro.ecu.edu.au/theses_hons/532