All posts by Dr. Ilaria Mascitti

About Dr. Ilaria Mascitti

Università degli Studi Guglielmo Marconi Rome Italy

Virtual worlds in education: AVATAR, ST.ART and Euroversity action-research initiatives

This paper gives an overview of the educational potential of virtual worlds and draws on the results of the AVATAR  ‘Added value of teaching in a virtual world’, the ST.ART ‘Street Artists in a virtual space’ and the Euroversity projects, all funded with support by the European Commission under the Lifelong Learning Programme. These action-research projects deal with the technological, pedagogical, cultural and motivational benefits of using virtual worlds in educational settings and provide a framework for the implementation of virtual worlds in education.

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Human capacity building through the development of a structured university communication strategy in Algeria

Capacity building is the main objective of the Strategicom project (2010-2013), an EU-funded project under the TEMPUS programme, which, specifically, aims at enhancing the university officials´ competences, so as to enhance the quality of a structured university communication strategy in Algeria. After analysing successful communication models in 12 leading European universities, the identified best practices will be adapted and transferred to Algerian Universities. The project will culminate in a policy recommendation paper to be presented to the Algerian Ministry of Higher Education for its approval, that will become a tool for the reform of the Algerian higher education structure.
The transfer of European Best Practices to Algerian Universities relies on a proposal of highly qualified on-line and in-country courses. This is intended to increase the technical skills and knowledge, in the area of communication strategy and ICT, of the staff selected to be part of the newly formed communication department in Algerian universities.
The Project, led by Università degli Studi Guglielmo Marconi, benefits from the support and involvement of the Algerian Ministry of Higher Education and of the Research Center in Applied Economics and Development (CREAD), and relies on the international cooperation of five European and six Algerian higher education institutions.

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Digital Storytelling to promote reading in secondary schools: the READ IT project

Università  degli Studi ‘Guglielmo Marconi’ presented the READ IT project ‘Training teachers to make READing fun through digITal storytelling’ during the 4th International Conference on Digital Storytelling ‘CREATE-SHARE-LISTEN’ held in Lillehammer, Norway, on 5-7 February 2011. (…)

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Street artists in a virtual space

Information and communication technologies have great potential for knowledge dissemination, effective learning and the development of more efficient education services. The Information and communication systems, whether networked or not, serve as specific media to implement the learning process.
The present paper will give a general overview of a new integrated learning methodology that combines an e-learning platform and a 3D virtual world and that aims at encouraging students participation as well as creative teaching and learning. It will show how this new methodology has been applied through the project ST.ART in the European partner schools. The learning takes place within technology-supported community of learners involved in the creation as well as consumption of content.

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Added value model of collaboration in higher education

An important factor for developing quality multimedia materials is that future developers should know the learning preferences and applicable strategies of potential students in depth and should also be able to look critically on the products developed by others and to be able to evaluate the added value of their own and others contributions. This paper describes our teaching strategy using an online collaborative methodology with added value based on: (a) generating student profile, (b) online knowledge building and (c) evaluation strategy. The applied methodology integrates e-learning preferences of different learning style dimensions and takes into consideration students´ expectations in learning situations as well as their background knowledge and skills. Knowledge building was realised by means of oral presentations and discussions and finalised within the online learning environment. Developing critical thinking and monitoring this learning progress was carried out by self-evaluation and peer-evaluation of one´s own products and those created by others and final evaluation required summed performance to be divided among students upon negotiated merits.

Article first published in ‘Interdisciplinary Journal of E-Learning and Learning Objects’, V. 6 (2010), pp. 203-215. Reprinted with permission of the Informing Science Institute
http://www.ijello.org/Volume6/IJELLOv6p203-215Beres723.pdf

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TIPS T-learning to Improve Professional Skills for intercultural dialogue

TIPS ‘T-learning to Improve Professional Skills for intercultural dialogue’ is a two-year Leonardo da Vinci project co-funded by the EU Lifelong Learning Programme. The project started in November 2007 and will finish in October 2009. The purpose of the project is to support cultural mediators around Europe to improve their skills and competences through the T-learning approach, an integrated methodology exploiting the potential of E-learning, M-learning and TV-learning.

The TIPS T-learning system hosts various tools to encourage both interactivity (e.g. self-assessment quizzes) and interaction (social software). TIPS beneficiaries will benefit from an on-line course supported by a mixed methodology where E-learning is supported by M-learning and TV-learning. The triple system exploits the benefits of distance learning tools and specific learning objects are developed for each tool offering a solution to compensate for any weaknesses that might be present in the other methodologies. Thus ensuring high quality interaction, portability, multimediality, simulations and no limits of space and time. These intrinsic qualities of the TIPS system are expected to positively impact cultural mediators’ learning process by promoting customized training able to fit different learning styles.

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