Developing and evaluating a university-wide online distributed learning system: The experience at RMIT University

Carmel McNaught, John Kenny, Paul Kennedy, Ross Lord

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


This paper will explain the policies relating to teaching and learning at RMIT University. The need to harness the potential of communication and information technologies as a means of implementing the Teaching and Learning Strategy has been evident since its inception in 1995 and through its refinement and reaffirmation in 1997. There has been an increase in the use of CIT in individual projects over the last few years which has increased flexible access to RMIT courses in several ways. However, it has become increasingly clear that a sustained approach to developing flexible courses for both our oncampus and off-campus students required a university-wide approach. In 1998, the University embarked on a comprehensive and ambitious project to align information technology systems to the principles and goals of the Teaching and Learning Strategy. The components of this IT Alignment Project are described. One of the major components is the RMIT Distributed Learning System (DLS). The choice of the online tools that comprise the DLS is described. A benchmark project to evaluate the toolset, both educationally and technically, has been underway in semester 1 1999. A major focus of the paper will be the description of the evaluation design and the results and insights obtained in semester 1.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-122
Number of pages18
JournalEducational Technology and Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Evaluation
  • Online learning system
  • Online toolset
  • University teaching & learning strategy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Engineering


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