CEC Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

1996

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences

Advisor

Marlyn Kemper Littman

Committee Member

Michael Moody

Committee Member

John A. Scigliano

Abstract

The purpose of this dissertation was to develop and evaluate a hypertext-based training tutorial/guide on asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) technology for use by school district educators and technology planners. A review of literature indicated training needs on new broadband technologies were not being adequately met from the point of view of an educational environment. An interactive hypertext solution was proposed, designed, and developed based on the needs of adult learners. An analysis of these needs indicated adults prefer flexibility in navigating between training topics as well as in the pace of material presentation, that is, whether to proceed at a faster or slower pace based on their personal preference, not the pace selected by an instructor. Interactive hypertext was found to support these specific needs. The procedures followed in this study included the selection of an appropriate authoring system, development of the tutorial/guide on ATM technology based on a structured methodology that focused on hypertext development, and an evaluation of the tutorial/guide. This evaluation included measuring its learning effectiveness through the use of pretests and posttests as well as an evaluation of the population's preferences, attitudes, and opinions toward this type of learning (hypertext-based) as measured by a comparison of precourse and post course surveys. A case-study research approach was proposed. The results, as evaluated by a comparison of mean scores, indicated that there was a statistically significant higher mean score on the topic mastery posttest than on the pretest when the hypertext-based tutorial was given to each participant. Furthermore, the preferences toward this type training also increased significantly as measured by the comparison of means of the precourse and postcourse preference surveys.

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