PEER REVIEWS:

Canadian educational institutions are actively involved in the creation of innovative products and processes designed to improve the quality of learning. Examples of these products may include the development of learning objects, a virtual course, or a technology-mediated learning environment in support of face-to-face delivery.

Quite often, an educator who seeks to enhance learning through the creation of these objects does so with considerable costs in both time and money. The result is the loss of opportunity for other teaching, research and service priorities.

Because scholarship at the post-secondary level has traditionally been restricted to the print media, there is little or no formal evaluation accorded to an educational object, to its innovators, or to the process of creation. Typically, evaluation committees have difficulty in assessing the value of educational innovation due to their lack of expert knowledge and an absence of any systematic process to evaluate the quality of the product.

Strides have been made in this process and projects such as the BELLE (Broadband Enabled Life Long Learning) Project and the MERLOT group have looked at methodologies to assess the scholarly contributions of individual faculty members.

OTHER RESOURCES:
A Convergent Participation Model for Evaluation of Learning Objects

By John Nesbit, Karen Belfer and John Vargo. Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology, Volume 28 (3), 2002. The properties that distinguish learning objects from other forms of educational software - global accessibility, metadata standards, finer granularity and reusability - have implications for evaluation. This article proposes a convergent participation model for learning object evaluation in which representatives from stakeholder groups converge towardmore similar descriptions and ratings through a two-stage process supported by online collaboration tools.

Information Gateways Handbook chapter 2.1
Quality selection: ensuring the quality of your collection. DESIRE (Development of a European Service for Information on Research and Education)The DESIRE group has compiled an extensive and comprehensive handbook designed to support libraries and other organizations interested in setting up large-scale information gateways on the Internet. This chapter addresses the quality and evaluation of Internet resources.

MERLOT: Peer Review of Instructional Technology
by Gerard L. Hanley and Cher Thomas. Syllabus Magazine Volume 14, No. 3 October 2000. An examination of the MERLOT Project's efforts to find innovative ways of providing peer-reviewed multimedia to educators through a cooperative, Web-based forum.

The good, the bad and the useless: evaluating Internet resources
by Judith Edwards Ariadne Volume 16, July 1998.

MERLOT
(Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching)
MERLOT's peer review process.