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Development Of An Independent Learning Environment For Operating Systems In Information Technology

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Technology, Communication, & Ethics

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.425.1 - 8.425.6



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Paper Authors

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C. Richard Helps

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Stephen Renshaw

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3430

Development of an Independent Learning Environment for Operating Systems in Information Technology

Aron N. Barabas, Stephen R. Renshaw, C. Richard G. Helps Information Technology, Brigham Young University


There is a great need for students to keep abreast with the constant evolution of technology in Information Technology (IT). In order to succeed, students need to develop learning strategies to master new technology. In order to ensure that students are well-grounded for life-long technical careers, schools must teach technical foundation courses. Since time-to-graduate is always a concern, this means they cannot always teach as many technical depth courses as they wish to. Students have to become independent learners so they can master all the up-to-date technical understanding they desire.

Brigham Young University is developing an ‘independent learning environment’ focused on teaching the Linux operating system. Through this learning platform students are able to learn essential technological skills on their own time, thus giving them the opportunity to expand their knowledge independently. This kind of ‘self-motivated’ learning tool can instill in the student a spirit of self-learning. The learning environment is a structured series of learning experiences to enable students to master operating system concepts.

This paper presents the learning environment, its associated assessment mechanisms and analysis of formative evaluation results.


The professional in Information Technology (IT) is faced with an ever-changing and diverse field that demands that they pay heed to constant technological advances. The student in an IT field must develop during their college years a pattern of ‘life long learning’ so that they can keep abreast with the changes and evolution that will inevitably take place while in their career.

The practice of life long learning is essential for a successful career in IT; without it the professional would inevitably become obsolete and become an unprofitable employee for their company. “Lifelong learning has become a necessity, [and] training at the beginning of a job is often not sufficient to prepare the worker for changing conditions in the job due to new technologies or new roles.”1

Technological companies spend millions of dollars each year upgrading their computer systems and training their workers to stay current with the latest technological advances. In light of this, students entering industry with a solid ability to expand their expertise in accordance with the technological advances will be ready to participate and lead in their chosen field. Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Helps, C. R., & Renshaw, S. (2003, June), Development Of An Independent Learning Environment For Operating Systems In Information Technology Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12071

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