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Athabasca University


Dr. Hongxue (Harris) Wang

Associate Professor - School of Computing and Information Systems


Secondary Email:

Phone#: 780-435-3912

Toll-free Phone#: 1-866-301-6337

Mobile Phone#:

Fax#: 780-435-3912

Education | Teaching Responsibilities | Academic Experience | Consultant Experience | Industry Experience | Professional Memberships | Affiliated Laboratories/Research Centers | Awards and Achievements | Research Profiles and Interests | Advisory Roles | Publications | Research Supervision | Current Projects | Recently Completed Projects | Other Interests | Link to Personal Webpage

Aided by AU's Mission Critical Fund, a virtual programming lab (VPL) is being developed to support students to learn programming in HTML, CSS, JavaScript,C++ and Java. To see what we have now, please visit


  1. Ph.D.,Computer Science, The Australian National University, Australia, 1999
  2. M.Sc., Computer Software, Jilin University, China, 1988
  3. B.Sc., Computer Systems and Architectures, Jilin University, China, 1985

Teaching Responsibilities

Since I came to AU in 2000, I have developed the following seven online courses:


  1. Comp 266 - Introduction to Web Programming. 
  2. Comp 347 - Computer Networks
  3. COMP 348 - Network Programming in Java
  4. COMP 369 - Practical Game Programming
  5. Comp 466 - Advanced Technology for Web-base Information Systems
  6. Comp 604 - Enterprise Computer Networks 
  7. Comp 660 - Enterprise Information Security

The eighth undergraduate course on computer and information security is in development, and will be ready by the end of 2011.

As SCIS undergraduate program director, I am currently coordinating COMP495 and COMP496. I am also teaching COMP660 to master students.



Academic Experience

Before came to Canada in 2000, I worked as a research fellow in Australia for a year in the area of information security. Since I joined Athabasca University in 2000, I have spent most of my research time on computing technologies for education, or e-learning. I spent about two years on developing EduPalace, an integrated system for Web-based distance education. I have also published many papers and authored two book chapters in the area of e-learning.


Consultant Experience

During the time I was in China, I worked as a consultant for the well-known Daqing Oil Co., to develop computer systems and to train the personnel for the company.


Industry Experience


Professional Memberships

I am a member of IEEE, Computer Society, and ACM.


Affiliated Laboratories/Research Centers


Awards and Achievements

I am two times award winner for the Mission Critical Fund at AU.


Research Profiles and Interests

  1. intelligent systems modelling, design and implementation The generic intelligent system model I developed and presented at IJCAI'97 is called constrained object hierarchy (COH). In this model, an intelligent system is a binding of some agents and a world, and for the agents the world consits of some objects, which can be worlds themselves, some defined methods the agents can use to act in or upon the world, and constraints representing the relationships between objects and the methods. Further in this model, constrants are classified as identity constraints, goal constraints, and trigger constraints. Identity constraints define the identity of the world; goal constraints set the goal for the agents to achieve; and the triggering constraints tell the agents under what conditions some defined actions should be taken.
  2. universal logic (UniLog) for knowledge representation I will describe UniLog in more detail later when I have time.
  3. network security: computer viruses, firewalls, security protocols, policies and formal methods for analysing network protocols and policies
  4. enabling-technology for electronic commerce
  5. agent systems including multi-agents and mobile agents
  6. object-oriented programming methodology and language (GISMO for Generalized Intelligent System Modeller)
  7. enabling-technology for e-learning: this is the area I have been working on since I came to this university.

Advisory Roles

I was on the university's e-learning advisory board, but I couldn't do much at the time. I have been on SCIS Academic Advisory Committee since it was established few years ago; I am also a member of the provincial IB advisory committee for Alberta.



Book chapter


  • Hongxue Wang: implement mobile learning at open universities, invited book chapter, in Open Source Mobile Learning: Mobile Linux Applications, published by IGI Global, 2010
  • Hongxue Wang: Asistive Technology for Teachers in Special Education, in Communication Technology for Students in Special Education or Gifted Programs, Joan E., published by IGI Global, 2010


Other Most Recent Publications

o    Hongxue Wang: Cloud Computing-based IT Solutions For Organizations with Multinational Branch Offices, submitted for publication at The International Conference on Information Management and Evaluation (ICIME) , 27-28 April, Toronto, Canada

o    Hongxue Wang, towards real virtual classroom, in proceedings of 2010 EDMEDIA conference, Toronto, June 28-July 3, 2010

o    Hongxue Wang, Using RSS in Collaborative Course Development, in proceedings of World Conference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, & Higher Education, Vancouver, Oct. 2009


Research Supervision

I supervised the following master students on their thesis essays


2.       Nola Andrew, A STUDY OF SKILL SET FOR NETWORK FORENSICS PROFESSIONALS, completed October 2009.

3.       Dipan Das, Learning assessment for online courses, completed February 2010.

4.       Dambar Kattel, Access Control for Web-based Enterprise Systems, completed April 2010.


6.       Loran Mackowetzky, Common Body of Knowledge for Network Forensic Science, completed January 2010.

7.       Barbara LePage, Towards more effective course design, completed February 2010

8.       Evan Wagner, security assessment on base-based computer networks, ongoing

9.       Susan D’Silva, learning objective based course design, ongoing



I supervised the following undergraduate students on their COMP495/496 essays:

1.     Clove Carneiro Junior, Mobile Web presence for Athabasca University, completed March 2010.

2.     Abdi Yusuf, an airplane booking system using Java and database, completed December 2009.

3.     Loren Bain, Automating Student Letters at NAIT, ongoing


Current Projects

Virtual Programming Lab to support online education: the objective of the project is to develop a Web-based virtual programming laboratory not only to provide students with an online programming environment, but also to enable collaborations among learners and teachers, so that students can get help from each other, and from instructors more timely.


Recently Completed Projects

DigOL - A Web-mining system to mine learning objects from the Web in support of online education. This project was funded by AU's Mission Critical Fund as well.


Other Interests

I like to fix things. If you have something broken please don't hesitate to bring it to me. I also like to read WuXia novels especially those by Jin Yong (金庸). As for sports, jogging, cycling and table tennis are my favourite.


Link to Personal Webpage

AU, CANADA'S OPEN UNIVERSITY, is an internationally recognized leader in online and distance learning.