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The iLab Shared Architecture: A Web Services Infrastructure to Build Communities of Internet Accessible Laboratories

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21 Author(s)
Harward, V.J. ; Center for Educ. Comput. Initiatives, Massachusetts Inst. of Technol., Cambridge, MA ; del Alamo, J.A. ; Lerman, S.R. ; Bailey, P.H.
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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's iLab project has developed a distributed software toolkit and middleware service infrastructure to support Internet-accessible laboratories and promote their sharing among schools and universities on a worldwide scale. The project starts with the assumption that the faculty teaching with online labs and the faculty or academic departments that provide those labs are acting in two roles with different goals and concerns. The iLab architecture focuses on fast platform-independent lab development, scalable access for students, and efficient management for lab providers while preserving the autonomy of the faculty actually teaching the students. Over the past two years, the iLab architecture has been adopted by an increasing number of partner universities in Europe, Australia, Africa, Asia, and the United States. The iLab project has demonstrated that online laboratory use can scale to thousands of students dispersed on several continents.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:96 ,  Issue: 6 )

Date of Publication:

June 2008

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