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Collaborative Universal Remote Education

CURE - The Collaborative Universal Remote Education Environment for Learning and Working together

News: CURE is available under an open source license: http://cure.sourceforge.net/

Diese Informationen sind auch auf Deutsch verfügbar.

What is CURE?

CURE is a non-commercial tool that facilitates collaborative learning in distributed teams using standard browsers over the Internet. CURE was developed at the FernUniversität in Hagen, the German distance learning university. CURE is based on combining the room metaphor, WIKI ideas, and communication tools.

Who should use CURE?

Anybody interested in working and learning with others over the Internet. Current users include mostly students enrolled in courses, seminars, labs, and project work – and, of course, their teachers and project leaders.

What functionality does CURE provide?

Users can create rooms for specific groups and purposes. The owner of a room defines its initial content. The room owner can make the room accessible to a number of users, or users may request access from room owners. Room owners can restrict access rights.

A room contains pages, resources and communication tools, which are created, manipulated, navigated and read by users of the room.

A room with a page in CURE.

A simple WIKI syntax is used to write the content of pages including formatted text, images, and TEX for expressing mathematical formulas.

Changing a page results in a new version – thus, multiple parallel write accesses result in alternative versions that can be merged later.

Rooms can be connected, thus, dedicated environments with special rooms for specific purposes can be constructed. Easy navigation in the so constructed virtual environment is supported via maps.

A room map in CURE.

E.g., our university offers course rooms that are connected to further course-specific rooms, which contain dedicated materials or are designed to support specific teams.

Users can add/remove/view resources associated with the room (e.g. to open a binary file, or to start a binary tool).

Users have their personal home page providing options for personalizing CURE. They can for instance subscribe to change notifications of rooms that can be delivered via e-mail.

Each room may have its own chat and room mailbox that are kept persistent. All users in a room can simply chat with all other online users in that room, or view and send mails to the discussion threads in the room’s mailbox. Chat and mail messages can use the WIKI syntax, and thus may be used to communicate mathematical formulas etc.

A room's mailbox.

Rooms can also contain a room calendar, which supports negotiation of meeting dates and times between room users.

For a detailed list of the features of CURE’s current version, see the user manual at http://mapper.fernuni-hagen.de/CURE/doc/Manual.pdf.

What are the benefits of CURE?

  • Simple setting-up and use of a persistent collaboration environment for your team
  • Access from any web browser
  • Instant communication and asynchronous sharing of material

What are our experiences with CURE?

CURE is successfully used in 4 courses in the winter term 2003/ 2004 in the schools for psychology (seminar), for mathematics (course on linear algebra), and for computer science (course on distributed systems, project­based class in CSCW). Currently, more than 300 users use CURE, and the user base is growing.

Additional Information and Publications

  • A powerpoint presentation introducing the latest version of CURE
  • A full list of CURE-related publicatiuons will come here soon.

For further Information contact

Till Schümmer or Joerg M. Haake
Cooperative Systems Division
FernUniversität in Hagen
Universitätsstr. 1
58084 Hagen Germany
Phone +49 - 23 31 - 9 87 - 3 27
Fax. +49 - 23 31 - 9 87 - 3 17
{Till.Schuemmer, Joerg.Haake}@fernuni-hagen.de


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