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Web-based Structured Hypermedia Algorithm Explanation System
Växjö University, Faculty of Mathematics/Science/Technology, School of Mathematics and Systems Engineering. Computer Science. (ISOVIS)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0519-2537
2007 (English)In: International Journal of Web Information Systems, ISSN 1744-0084, Vol. 3, no 3, p. 179-197Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – Development of a system called Structured Hypermedia Algorithm Explanation (SHALEX), as a remedy for the limitations existing within the current traditional algorithm animation systems. SHALEX provides several novel features, such as use of invariants, reflection of the high-level structure of an algorithm rather than low-level steps, and support for programming the algorithm in any procedural or object-oriented programming language.

Design/methodology/approach – By defining the structure of an algorithm as a directed graph of abstractions, algorithms may be studied top-down, bottom-up, or using a mix of the two. In addition, SHALEX includes a learner model to provide spatial links, and to support evaluations and adaptations.

Findings – Evaluations of traditional algorithm animation systems designed to teach algorithms in higher education or in professional training show that such systems have not achieved many expectations of their developers. One reason for this failure is the lack of stimulating learning environments which support the learning process by providing features such as multiple levels of abstraction, support for hypermedia, and learner-adapted visualizations. SHALEX supports these environments, and in addition provides persistent storage that can be used to analyze students’ performance. In particular, this storage can be used to represent a student model that supports adaptive system behavior.

Research limitations/implications – SHALEX is being implemented and tested by the authors and a group of students. The tests performed so far have shown that SHALEX is a very useful tool. In the future we plan additional quantitative evaluation to compare SHALEX with other AA systems and/or the concept keyboard approach.

Practical implications – SHALEX has been implemented as a web-based application using the client-server architecture. Therefore, students can use SHALEX to learn algorithms through both distance education and in the classroom setting.

Originality/value – This paper presents a novel algorithm explanation system for users who wish to learn algorithms.

Keywords: Interactive learning environments, multimedia/hypermedia systems, programming and programming languages, Navigation

Article Type: Research paper

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing , 2007. Vol. 3, no 3, p. 179-197
Keywords [en]
Algorithms, Hypermedia, Visualization, Distance Learning
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer and Information Sciences Computer Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:vxu:diva-4691OAI: oai:DiVA.org:vxu-4691DiVA, id: diva2:204649
Available from: 2007-10-24 Created: 2007-10-24 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved

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Kerren, Andreas

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CiteExportLink to record
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  • apa
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Output format
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