Title: Towards Ontology Development Tools for E-Learning Systems: A Survey

Principal Investigator: Dr. Dragan Gasevic

Grant Provider: MCR Fund ($4,410) and Assoc. VP (Research) Athabasca University ($2,400)

Amount: $6810

Duration: 2008

Abstract: Semantic Web technologies in general and ontologies in particular have already proven as being of great help in authoring and adaptation of online courses and in provision of reliable and timely feedback to both students and teachers. Among different kinds of ontologies relevant for e-learning, ontologies describing the actual content of a course and typically referred to as ‘domain ontologies’, have a distinctive role since ontologies of this kind cannot be reused across different subject domains, but have to be created anew. However, their creation is not a trivial task because current approaches and tools assume a background in knowledge engineering or familiarity with ontology languages and even when a (semi)automatic approach is proposed, tools are in general too complex to use. Therefore, domain ontologies represent the main obstacle for wider deployment of semantic rich e-learning environments. This project will investigate existing approaches and related tools for ontology creation in order to provide guidelines for effective integration of domain ontologies in the e-learning context.