In 2002, as a result of one of the plans of the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development to encourage the development of tertiary information technology departments, a university e-learning support center was established for the first time in Korea. The following year, Jeju University was identified as the first to open an e-learning support center and Gyeongsang University was the second. Yeungnam University was the third university to be identified as a leader due to its opening of the DGe (Daegu & Gyeongbuk Region University e-Learning Support Center) in 2005.
About 1.8 billion Korean won were invested in building the local system for the support center, from national and university grants.
The University e-Learning Support Center consists of four teams including the Contents Development Team, the System Operations Team, the R&D Team and the Planning and Administration Team. One advisory committee exists, of which twenty members are representatives of joint universities.
'Promoting the Basis for an e-Learning hub; Moving toward Globalization'.
In the year 2005 the foundations were established for the development and exchange of e-learning techniques. This year is regarded as a time for fine-tuning basic aspects of operation via the sharing of operating information between participating universities and the expansion in the range of e-learning services. In 2007 and after, the focus will shift to encouraging the acceptance of the concept of ?ife Long Education.?The year 2008 will be a year of further fine-tuning and relating of local experiences to those of overseas universities in order to improve e-learning services. The final goal of the DGe will be attained in 2009 through the exchange of credit between other
e-learning support centers and industry-academic clusters providing unity between regions.System Configuration
An L-7 switcher was installed to have the server load-balanced and the SAN style system configuration was selected so that 2G bps of speed and the security of data could be guaranteed. Moreover systems are being operated for 24 hours a day, 365 days per year by the fail-safe function of the dual processor SAN switcher. All equipment is connected to a KT-IDC back-bone network to ensure maximum safety and security for the user-based system. LMS and LCMS of DGe Systems, which were developed based on the above system, have the following features.
First, academic systems such as the virtual Yeungnam University and life-long education systems can exchange credits and can be easily linked with each other.
Second, supported by Scom 2004, the international standard for e-Learning, compatibility among LMS and object oriented study of contents can be easily re-used.
Third, a real-time seminar was added to the e-learning center's function to prevent it from missing interaction between an instructor and a learner. In addition, various kinds of user based systems such as sending e-mails in bulk and loading numerical editors to Q&A were composed.
The DGe has a high quality broadcasting studio which can make 3D contents, includes five multi-media recording rooms, one teacher planning room, and a data room.
Development of Specialized Contents
In the beginning of 2006, a course entitled 'Basic Korean Conversation' was developed for international students from overseas and also for Korean residents abroad who want to study Korean language. The course book also includes aspects of Korean traditional culture.
Over 60 different bodies including regional NGOs, four-year universities, two-year colleges, cyber-universities and various industries participate in the cooperative network and are stepping forward to help establish the industry-academia related e-learning cluster.
As a host university, according to the president, YU is developing its educational program in stages, with the plan that by 2009, 70% of its programs will be offered via
e-learning. This means that by that stage, on-line learning is expected to be the preferred method of learning, and students will be actually be encouraged to enroll and study in programs using e-learning methods.
Internet Lecturing? The Current Status
The number of YU Internet lectures increases every year. Now, in 2006, about 17,000 students are receiving an education via the Internet.
From now on the DGe center will carry out an essential role in skills training linked with a regional strategic industry like Nuri (New University for Regional Innovation) Project. It will also plan to promote contents on demand, and develop local self-governing bodies for reform.
With these efforts DGe will be the center of knowledge as the hub of an industry-academia cluster, and it will narrow the information divide through providing contents development for the currently marginalized, such as long-term in-patients or disabled people. In addition, it will foster participation in various information-oriented aspects of the Education Ministry by establishing the e-learning system.
By accomplishing all of the above goals, Yeungnam University will fulfill its responsibilities in running the center.