This publication is the final report of the research project 'Distance Learning in Multimedia Networks', which is part of the National Multimedia Programme. The report is also available on line at <URL: http://matwww.ee.tut.fi/kamu/loppuraportti>. The three-year project began on February 1, 1996 and ended on January 31 , 1999. The publication describes the three-year study conducted in the project and the results achieved. The publication comprises two chapters: Chapter I presents the goals of the project, the research involved, the project organization and the main results, and Chapter II presents the pilot projects and the results they achieved.
The publication is intended for those interested in distance applying new technology in distance learning for researchers, developers of distance-learning methods, users, teachers, trainers, planners and students of technology, both in private and public organizations. We hope that the experiences and results presented in this publication will be of use to all those who work in this rapidly developing sector.
'Distance Learning in Multimedia Networks' was the largest research project in the Natioanal Multimedia Programme. In its third year the project included 32 firms, six research units and more than 20 researchers. More than 20 pilot projects were carried out during the project. The success of such a project is the sum of many factors. 'Distance Learning in Multimedia Networks' has brought together institutes engaged in research on educational technology and teaching, local authorities and their educational systems, a large number of hardware and software manufacturers, publishing houses, technology centres, training services and telecommunications firms.
Coordination of such a diverse network has been both challenging and rewarding. The interest in the development of new technology and in its application to training on the part of the researchers, company personnel, teachers and other persons involved has been so great that the barries between disciplines and cultures were overcome. As a result, the cooperation crucial for the success of the project proved possible.
It is a pleasure to be able to thank the the representatives of all the the companies and research units, all the researchers, theachers, students and trainers involved for the work done. We would also like to thank the students who participated in the experiments for their feedback, which was extremely valuable. Special thanks are also due to the firms and to Tekes Technology Development Centre, which funded the project.
Tampere, January 20, 1999