Cloud Computing Solution for Internet based Teaching and Learning

Cloud Computing Solution for Internet based Teaching and Learning

Lee Chao (University of Houston – Victoria, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0957-0.ch015
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Abstract

This chapter reviews a five-phase solution development process. It points out that a well developed cloud based IT infrastructure should be constructed on a solid requirement analysis and thoughtful design. The selection of cloud technology should meet the needs of educational institutions. The successful implementation of a cloud based IT infrastructure relies on adequate training and tutoring services. The evaluation of a cloud based IT infrastructure gives direction on further improvement. This chapter provides strategies and guidelines for creating a cloud based IT infrastructure for educational institutions.
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Background

Today’s educational institutions are not limited to their campuses. With the Web based teaching and learning system, students around the world are able participate in the learning process through the Internet. To support globalized e-learning, it requires a complicated IT infrastructure. Such an IT infrastructure is able to host online courses for a variety of curricula. It is able to store and manage the data for thousands of or even millions of students. It supports communication and collaboration among multiple campuses around the world. It can manage teaching and learning of different cultures and in different languages. It responds to laboratory activities in real time. It is able to quickly update the e-learning system to reflect the changes in a curriculum. The design and implementation of such a complicated IT infrastructure requires thoughtful design and careful planning. For many years, information system developers have summarized their experiences and developed theories of solution development. According to one theory, a solution development process consists of five major phases, requirement analysis, solution design and validation, solution development, solution implementation, and solution assessment (Betz, 2007).

In the requirement analysis phase, solution designers analyze business requirements and identify the proper infrastructure for meeting the requirements. Once the requirement information is collected, the solution designers convert the requirement information into a solution model and use the model to verify if the requirements can be met by the corresponding IT infrastructure. The solution model should include the specifications of the network configuration as well as the hardware and software.

The development process may include the selection of hardware and software. A solution development process consists of two components, software development and infrastructure deployment. During the deployment of the infrastructure, the solution developers install network work equipment, computer hardware and software, and configure the system according to the solution model created in the design phase.

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