Online Help: Design Issues for Authoring Systems

  • T. M. Duffy
  • M. D. Langston

Abstract

Computer-based instruction (CBI) has been heralded as an educational panacea since the early applications of the 1950s. Many believed that computers would see widespread instructional use, presenting high quality educational materials with pacing and feedback geared to the individual student. In fact, CBI has not been so widely used. At first it seemed that the high cost of computer systems prevented users from investing in CBI. In recent years, however, hardware costs have dropped dramatically and microcomputers have invaded homes, schools, and businesses. Users are exploiting computer resources for database management, accounting, and word processing. But they are still not using the computer as an educational tool, except perhaps for general “computer literacy” instruction. In a recent survey of Texas Instruments and IBM microcomputer users, for example, not one person indicated that he or she used educational software (Duffy & Kelly, 1985). Publishers still consider educational software to be a high risk investment. Even in the American military, where much of the basic research on CBI has been conducted, computers seldom see active duty in the classroom.

Keywords

Stein Kelly Editing 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. M. Duffy
    • 1
  • M. D. Langston
    • 1
  1. 1.Carnegie-Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA

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