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The goal of this paper is to describe a new approach to a content creation and delivery mechanism for a programming course. This approach is based on the concept of creating a large repository of learning objects, each of which consists of the core material, code examples, supplementary notes, and review questions. A learning object will be uniquely described by a XML document and presents an interface for future search, retrieval and updating, as well as for potential connection to external assessment tools. Furthermore, we describe a new teaching, learning and authoring tool (called adaptive book) that allows users to add new learning objects, modify current ones, and discuss concepts using a variety of representation models. With the adaptive book, an instructor will be able to design his or her very own course using a large repository of material, which will target a particular audience or a customized syllabus. In addition, the electronic adaptive book will serve as an interactive, continuously up-to-date learning environment for students. It will allow students to create personal learning profiles that are embedded into the core content of the course. We believe that in the near future, this electronic adaptive book will have the potential to replace or enhance traditional paper textbooks. In all physicality, it is impossible to have a personal instructor for each student, but with the adaptive book, we believe we are one step closer to realizing the dream of individualized instructions for each and every student.
Date of Conference: 28-30 April 2003