Computer software and telecommunication technologies are being assimilated into the education sector. At a slower pace, educational methodologies have been evolving and gradually adopted by educators. The widespread and rapid assimilation of technology may be outstripping the uptake of better pedagogical strategies. Non‐pedagogical development of content could lead to the development of legacy systems that constrain future developments. Problems have arisen with computer‐based learning (CBL) materials, such as the lack of uptake of monolithic programmes that cannot be easily changed to keep pace with natural progress or the different requirements of different teachers and institutions. Also, hypertext/hypermedia learning environments have limitations in that following predefined paths is no more interactive than page turning. These considerations require a flexible and dynamic approach for the benefit of both the teacher and student. Courses may be constructed from vignettes to meet a desired purpose and to avoid the problems of adoption for the reasons that programmes cannot easily be changed or are not designed to meet particular needs. Vignettes are small, first‐principle, first‐person, heuristic activities (which are mimetic) from which courses can be constructed Vignettes use an object‐orientated approach to the development of computer‐based learning materials. Vignettes are objects that can be manipulated via a property sheet, which enables changing the object's inherent character or behaviour. A vignette object can interact with other vignette objects to create more complex educational interactions or models. The vignette approach leads to a development concept that is horizontally distributed across disciplines rather than vertically limited to single subjects
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