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OT: Perl CBT?

by xChauncey (Scribe)
on Aug 15, 2003 at 23:05 UTC ( #284274=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Where and how to start learning Perl

Wow! Great list.

Your list and homenode made me think of starting a CBT on learning Perl. I was thinking chapters on particular features of Perl, followed up by interactive practice sessions, in which the user could enter script and have it judged based on whether it would compile, and whether it would produce the desired outcome.

Of course there would be a security issue if the program were web based, but if a training program were available to download and use on the user's own computer, this could be avioded.

I work as a CBT developer, and have been learning Perl for several months now. I usually develop in Authorware, but I think that in keeping with the spirit of open source, if I have time I may try my hand at something like this in HTML and Perl. The hardest part would to produce an interactive and engaging CBT rather than a static tutorial reader, and judging the interactive scripting sessions (possible even?) since there are so many different ways to do things in Perl. Maybe a more realistic approach would be to have a more traditional question and answer quiz at the end of each chapter, on which the user would be immediately judged and provided with useful feedback.

Pipe dreams?...

update Of course all of this would have to wait until I were to gain a much better understanging of Perl, and even then would probably be limited to the simplest concepts.

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Re: OT: Perl CBT?
by woolfy (Chaplain) on Aug 15, 2003 at 23:55 UTC
    I've been making CBT for quite a while and I still look back with some fondness at that time. But anyway... of course it's a piece of cake to build good CBT with HTML and Perl (throw in some MySQL). I just wished I had Perl and HTML (and MySQL) 16 years ago... It would have been so much easier.

    But please don't make the same mistake as CBT-developers of all times made. It's not the tools with or the media on which the CBT is made. It's always about the content. And of course the way you present the content is important, but not as important as the content itself. Good written text, presented in small enough parts so the reader won't get frustrated. Good questions, good answers, good record keeping, low reaction times.

    Good CBT can be made with MS-DOS batch files, bad CBT can be made with the most modern and best content management systems (which tend to be horribly slow). Many many books have been written and, as it seems, seldomly read.

    As to your suggestion to write CBT which contains something for judging Perl scripts: that's closer to Artificial Intelligence than to CBT. Debuggers can do a lot nowadays, but not checking for something to have a desired outcome.

    I've seen the prices paid for CBT these days and I think they're ridiculously low. No fun or honour in there any more. I guess I'll stick to writing and consulting and maybe some more programming.

    There are a lot of reasons why there are so small amounts of good CBT and why CBT is not used much more. The same with good websites. Lots of people think it just comes in for free, and don't want to pay for it.

    Update: corrected spelling mistakes (again)(2x) and added a sentence at the end.

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