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RE: [Proposal] schema:OnlineCourse

From: Barker, Phil A <Phil.Barker@hw.ac.uk>
Date: Tue, 16 Dec 2014 15:55:09 +0000
To: Vicki Tardif Holland <vtardif@google.com>
CC: Wes Turner <wes.turner@gmail.com>, GUANGYUAN PIAO <parklize@gmail.com>, Thad Guidry <thadguidry@gmail.com>, Aaron Bradley <aaranged@gmail.com>, Public Vocabs <public-vocabs@w3.org>
Message-ID: <8921D5581FA8454A8F2E6C5D33E03199D45E6D38@HW-MBX-01.hw.ac.uk>

Hi Vicki

1. Courses can comprise Courses. This is especially important at Universities that recruit into and award certificates for programmes (Courses) that are built from modules (Courses).

> Can you give an example of this? It may be better to model these as different types rather than trying to mash
> them together. The programmes type could then include the modules.

I see from Stuart's comment on the Google doc that US Universities may do this differently, and I mentioned before that terminology is difficult, so I'll pick an example as close to home as possible, and I will use the terms that we use and have used here.

Heriot-Watt University advertises and enrols students into programmes
see http://www.hw.ac.uk/study/course-a-z.htm  for examples specifically
G400 Computer Science BSc  http://www.undergraduate.hw.ac.uk/programmes/G400/
G560 Information Systems BSc http://www.undergraduate.hw.ac.uk/programmes/G560/
Information Technology (Business) MSc/Diploma http://www.postgraduate.hw.ac.uk/prog/msc-information-technology-business-/
(At HW we call these programmes, but I think the most common term for them in the UK is courses, the most common way for UK students to apply for undergraduate study is through UCAS, http://search.ucas.com/ which calls them courses).

The Heriot-Watt Information Systems programme comprises several courses (more generally known in the UK as modules or units). Students cannot sign up for these unless they are enrolled on a relevant programme and so they are not advertised externally in the same way, I don't know if you can see the course handbook at http://www.macs.hw.ac.uk/macshome/IS_UG_Handbook.pdf but is shows which courses a student will take in each year / semester. For example
year 1 / semester 1
* F27SA software development 1
* F27IS Interactive systems
* F27PX Praxis
* F27TS Technology in Society
(if you cannot see the course handbook, there is similar information available for the Manchester University Computer Science BSc available from
http://www.cs.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/computer-science/?code=00560&pg=options they are similar to the courses that you have been using as examples.)

Is that the sort of information that helps?

Phil







________________________________
From: Vicki Tardif Holland [vtardif@google.com]
Sent: 16 December 2014 14:28
To: Barker, Phil A
Cc: Wes Turner; GUANGYUAN PIAO; Thad Guidry; Aaron Bradley; Public Vocabs
Subject: Re: [Proposal] schema:OnlineCourse


On Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 6:19 AM, Barker, Phil A <Phil.Barker@hw.ac.uk<mailto:Phil.Barker@hw.ac.uk>> wrote:
1. Courses can comprise Courses. This is especially important at Universities that recruit into and award certificates for programmes (Courses) that are built from modules (Courses).

Can you give an example of this? It may be better to model these as different types rather than trying to mash them together. The programmes type could then include the modules.



2. I don't think there is much to be gained from having a separate class on OnlineCourse rather than a property of a Course to flag whether it is online or not. I  think the properties you have for OnlineCourse also apply to regular courses. Most regular courses have an online component.


Point taken. I think it is important to designate MOOCs from other courses. I tend to prefer using subclasses instead of booleans as it is easier to expand a subclass to include properties I missed the first time around.


3. I think it would be better to model an instance of a Course as a collection of EducationalEvents and CreativeWorks.


The integration with Event is one of the places that needs refining.


4. Language is difficult. The different usage between UK and US English is one thing, but more importantly commonly used terms often relate to specific education systems or pedagogies. So phrases like "instructors deliver lessons to students" implies a particular pedagogy. Also this means that common terms become ambiguous and open to misinterpretation in international use, e.g. class, course, programme, module. This is important in schema.org<http://schema.org> where definitions tend to be minimalist.


Good point. I'll update the description to be more inclusive of other educational systems.



As a general question, do you have some usecases in mind and target example websites? It's difficult to assess whether these properties are sufficient and realistic without those.

I'll update the document to include some of the sites I was using for reference, but they were:

Coursera (The example came from https://www.coursera.org/course/datascitoolbox)
MIT course catalog (http://student.mit.edu/catalog/m6a.html)
Stanford course catalog (https://explorecourses.stanford.edu)
edX (https://www.edx.org/)
Cambridge Center for Adult Education (http://www.ccae.org/)

- Vicki


Vicki Tardif Holland | Ontologist | vtardif@google.com<mailto:vtardif@google.com>



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Received on Tuesday, 16 December 2014 15:56:04 UTC

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