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9 volute@g-vo.org 2303 <title>Educational Resources in the Virtual Observatory</title>
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11 volute@g-vo.org 2303 <meta name="Title" content="Educational Resources in the Virtual Observatory" />
12     <meta name="author" content="Marco Molinaro" />
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34 volute@g-vo.org 2304 <h1>Educational Resources in the Virtual Observatory<br/>
35 volute@g-vo.org 2302 Version <span class="docversion">0.1</span></h1>
36     <h2 class="subtitle">Filled in automatically</h2>
37     <dl>
38     <dt>Working Group</dt>
39 volute@g-vo.org 2303 <dd><a href="http://wiki.ivoa.net/twiki/bin/view/IVOA/WebHome">Edu IG</a></dd>
40 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <dt><b>This version:</b></dt>
41     <dd><a href="" class="currentlink">filled in automatically</a></dd>
42     <dt><b>Latest version:</b></dt>
43     <dd> not issued outside
44 volute@g-vo.org 2304 EDU-IG</dd>
45 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <dt><b>Previous version(s):</b></dt>
46 volute@g-vo.org 2303 <dd> None</dd>
47 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <dt><b>Author(s):</b></dt>
48 volute@g-vo.org 2303 <dd>Marco Molinaro<br/>
49     Markus Demleitner<br/>
50     Massimo Ramella</dd>
51 volute@g-vo.org 2302 </dl>
53     <h2>Abstract</h2>
54 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <p>
55     The goal of this IVOA Note is to introduce and explain the needs
56     rising from first attempts in deploying astrophysical resources
57     dedicated to educational purposes inside standard VO resources.
58     Issues, proposed solutions and desirables are here reported to be
59     possibly taken into account in future modifications of relevant
60     standards.
61     </p>
62     <p>
63     In detail, here is discussed: the curation of educational resources
64     inside or along with standard registration; the reasons for documents,
65     tutorials and similar to be registered and searched through registries
66     alongside with the means of reaching this goal; an idea for resource
67     language internationalization.
68     </p>
69     <p>
70     VO resources as useful material for astronomy and astrophysics
71     education and dissemination has been proved by various international
72     projects and direct request for educational data publishing has arised
73     from networks of educational telescopes.
74     </p>
76 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <h2> Status of This Document</h2>
77     <p id="statusdecl">(updated automatically)</p>
78 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <p>This is an IVOA Note generated by discussion between Education IG and Registry WG members mainly.</p>
79     <p> <em>A list of </em><span style="background: transparent"><a href="http://www.ivoa.net/Documents/"><i>current
80 volute@g-vo.org 2302 IVOA Recommendations and other technical documents</i></a></span><em > can be found at http://www.ivoa.net/Documents/.</em></p>
81 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <h2 class="prologue-heading-western">Acknowledgements</h2>
82 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <p>blah</p>
83     </div>
84     <h2>Contents</h2>
85     <div>
86     <?toc ?>
87     </div>
88 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307
89 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <div class="body">
90 volute@g-vo.org 2304
91 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <div class="section">
92     <h1><a id="Introduction"></a>Introduction</h1>
93 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <p>
94     Advances in technology and communications are creating new and exciting
95     opportunities for teachers to bring observational astronomy into their
96     classrooms. In fact, there is a growing availability of remotely controlled
97     telescopes dedicated to education in many countries world-wide, from the
98     Bradford Robotic Telescope on MountTeide, Tenerife (http://www.telescope.org)
99     to the radio telescopes of the Radio Physics Lab, IUCAA, Pune
100     (http://www.ncra.tifr.res.in/rpl). In some cases, educational telescopes are
101     linked into a network with the aim of guaranteeing the best observing conditions,
102     including deep sky observations during regular daytime school hours, and
103     the best instrument for the particular program of interest. Examples
104     of these networks are iTelescope.net (http://www.itelescope.net) and EuHOU-MW
105     (http://euhou.obspm.fr/public).
106     </p>
107     <p>
108     As telescopes enter classrooms more frequently, interest is growing for a
109     public archive of observations and hence for publishing and curation tools,
110     together with the basic applications needed to retrieve, display
111     and analyze data. The VO already includes most of the technology needed
112     to satisfy the requests of educational observatories. In fact, since several
113     years, VO, and in particular the European project EuroVO, is devoting part
114     of its resources to education (http://wwwas.oats.inaf.it/aidawp5). It is
115     therefore a natural decision for VO to tackle the problem of publishing
116     educational data in VO archives.
117     </p>
118     <p>
119     Alongside with these data collections and service based resources an important
120     role is played also by tutorials and use cases adopted in astrophysics dissemination.
121     Documented step-by-step tutorials, use cases that explain basic astrophysical
122     research performed using VO tools and resources, and similar exist in various formats
123     and have been translated in different lancguages. Providing a way to preserve them
124     and make them easily searchable will be an added value to teachers and researchers
125     involved in education and dissemination, both for astrophysics and the VO.
126     </p>
127     <p>
128     Resource registration for both data services and documents gives a nice answer to
129     the scenario here above described (while efforts for data archiving will rely upon
130     interested data centers), but, while technically this seems not a great problem,
131     from the point of view of keeping clean the resources devoted to education will
132     require some more effort.
133     </p>
134     <p>
135     Next section will discuss the idea of educational resources curation, then
136     <a href="#regext">Registering Texts</a> will work out the use cases and needs for
137     registration of tutorials and documents. Finally, the idea of introducing language
138     internationalization of resources will be discussed.
139     </p>
140 volute@g-vo.org 2304 </div> <!-- section Introduction -->
142 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <div class="section">
143 volute@g-vo.org 2304 <h2><a id="curreg">A Curated Registry for Education</a></h2>
144 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <p>
145     From a technical point of view there is no need to add new elements or extensions
146     to the existing standard for VO Resources (<cite>std:STDREGEXT</cite>) and extensions
147     to let astrophysical resources devoted to educational, outreach or amateur targets.
148     The only real need for investigating changes in what already exists is due to a
149     use case's distinction between resources to be used in teaching and dissemination
150     versus all the research driven resources that exist in the VO.
151     </p>
152     <p>
153     For the sake of simplicity here we will distinguish these two groups of resources as
154     <i>educational</i> and <i>professional</i> but without any intent of putting them
155     on different levels of importance.
156     </p>
157 volute@g-vo.org 2304 <div class="section">
158 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <h3><a id="eduvspro">Educational vs. Professional Resources</a></h3>
159     <p>
160     On one side, teachers and educators may find it difficult to filter out
161     from all VO resources the ones that are suitable for their tutorials and
162     examples. On the other side, researchers may find annoying having,
163     possibly non-trusted, resources in the output of their search. Again,
164     we stress it is not a matter of the quality of the data deployed, but
165     only a distinction made upon the resources' scope. Moreover, the same
166     resource may be useful for both the goals, but this leads to the same
167     point of discussion: how to properly tag resources?
168     </p>
169     <p>
170     In the next subsection a possible tagging solution, based upon the existing
171     <i>ContentLevel</i> element of VOResource, but requiring a small change
172     to it is presented. The subsequent subsection describes the idea of a
173     curated registry for educational resources and the reasons for it to exist.
174     </p>
175     </div> <!-- subsection eduvspro -->
177     <div class="section">
178     <h3><a id="contentlvl">ContentLevel granularity issue</a></h3>
179     <p>
180     In <cite>std:STDREGEXT</cite> already exists the <i>ContentLevel</i> element
181     allowing data publishers to optionally identify their resources as being
182     suitable for one or more of the following audiences:
183     <ul>
184     <li>General</li>
185     <li>Elementary Education</li>
186     <li>Middle School Education</li>
187     <li>Secondary Education</li>
188     <li>Community College</li>
189     <li>University</li>
190     <li>Research</li>
191     <li>Amateur</li>
192     <li>Informal Education</li>
193     </ul>
194     This element turns out to be misused by resource publisher probably because
195     it is not really clear what the subtle differences between the available
196     possibilities are. Probably, simplifying the view on this element, e.g.
197     restricting to only three:
198     <ul>
199     <li>General</li>
200     <li>Research</li>
201     <li>Amateur</li>
202     </ul>
203     possible values may lead to both a better description of their resources
204     by data providers and a suitable tagging solution for a first filtering on
205     differently targeted resources at client level.
206     </p>
207     <p>
208     This change in the already existing standard will require small or no
209     changes on the already registered resources (MM provide a couple of
210     figures to justify this!) and thus will not disrupt what exists or
211     trouble VO publishers.
212     </p>
213     </div> <!-- subsection contentlvl -->
215     <div class="section">
216     <h3><a id="edureg">Curating the Edu Registry</a></h3>
217     <p>
218     Even in the case of the simplified <i>ContentLevel</i> tagging system
219     a curated registry for educational VO resources will be useful for
220     educators to easily access the wanted data and services. A good example
221     for this is the educational version of the Aladin sky atlas, that has a
222     built in curated set of resources suitable for educational level
223     tutorials.
224     </p>
225     <p>
226     Curation will require some effort in managing and keeping up to date
227     such a registry but, most important, has some restrictions coming from
228     the IVOA resource registry architecture.
229     </p>
230     <p>
231     If such a registry were a standard local registry (<cite>std:RI1</cite>)
232     its resources would be harvested by the full registries: this means
233     that any educational dedicated resource will go up to the full VO
234     set of resources, which is what we don't want to happen to keep the
235     <i>professional</i> side to be robust.
236     </p>
237     <p>
238     If it were to be a full registry, it will harvest itself all the existing
239     resources, and not all of them will fit or be suitable for the educational
240     scope the registry has to be preservde for.
241     </p>
242     <p>
243     What is needed is a resource (the curated registry) capable of :
244     <ul>
245     <li><i>manually</i> harvesting the existing VO resources
246     (e.g. from a full registry);</li>
247     <li>register its own educational resources without being directly
248     harvested by full registries (e.g. this could be done using a
249     sibling publishing registry dedicated to host those educational
250     resources that are to be harvested by the standard full registries.</li>
251     </ul>
252     </p>
253     <p>
254     The drawing in Fig. 1 exemplifies the above descripted
255     scenario. This solution will, again, not touch the existing architecture
256     while giving flexibility for the emerging educational resources to
257     be curated.
258     <img src="curation.png"></img>
259     </p>
260     </div> <!-- subsection edureg -->
262 volute@g-vo.org 2304 </div> <!-- section curreg -->
264     <div class="section">
265     <h2><a id="regext">Registering Texts</a></h2>
266     <p>Educational material is not only about services -- text-like material
267     like tutorials, worked-out use cases, or textbook-like material is at
268     least as important. Within the VO community, there is a large body of
269     such material for a wide variety of audiences ranging from pre-school to
270     researchers (TODO: cite AIDA, EuroVO, VAO works).</p>
272     <p>To date, such material has been collected informally by the various
273     projects on plain web pages. It was, in consequence, hard to find it.
274     Also, locating editable forms of such texts -- which has been found to
275     be necessary fairly regularly -- has been at least difficult; while
276     representing source-product relationships is in principle in the domain
277     of provenance and thus not in scope for the registry, in the case of
278     texts the relation is so simple and its representation so useful that we
279     propose to include it in a simple registry extension covering text-like
280     material, dubbed DocRegExt in the following.</p>
282     <p>The VO already has a registry extension for standards, which of
283     course are also text-like (<cite>std:STDREGEXT</cite>). This extension,
284     however, focuses on metadata important for standards -- e.g.,
285     vocabularies and status -- that is not pertinent for educational
286     material. Conversely, it is not concerned with document language (which
287     can safely be assumed to be English for standards), and it disregards
288     the issue of document formats, which for educational material is
289     important.</p>
291     <div class="section">
292     <h3><a id="regext-usecases">Use Cases</a></h3>
294     <p>The design of DocRegExt has been guided by the desire to fulfill the
295     following use cases:</p>
297     <ul>
298     <li>Is there a tutorial covering discovering intermediate mass black
299     holes? (Standard VOResource is sufficient)</li>
300     <li>Is there a tutorial covering working with X-Ray data? (Standard
301     VOResource is sufficient)</li>
302     <li>Is there a tutorial dealing with Planets suitable for school use?
303     (Standard VOResource is sufficient)</li>
304     <li>Is there a tutorial dealing with Planets suitable for school use in
305     Italian? (That requires the declaration of the document language)</li>
306     <li>What are the subjects of maintained (in the sense of: probably
307     working in the VO as found by the students) tutorials?
308     (The active flag of standard VOResource is
309     unsuitable here since even outdated resources will still be accessible;
310     therefore, we introduce the maintained flag)</li>
311     <li>Are there tutorials using redshifts? (This is solved by allowing
312     table metadata in DocRegExt)</li>
313     <li>Where can I find an editable version of tutorial ivo://auth/tut1?
314     (This is solved by allowing multiple access URLs with different content
315     types, which should be sufficient to allow answering the question)</li>
316     <li>Are there translations of tutorial ivo://auth/tut2? (This is covered
317     by the recommendations on declaring relationships between text-like
318     resources)</li>
319     <li>Is there material using service ivo://auth/svc1? (Again, declaring
320     relationships covers this use case)</li>
321     <li>Is there material about something visible tonight? (In principle,
322     allowing the coverage element withing DocRegExt resources would allow
323     answering the question; in reality, few registries expose this
324     information in useable form)</li>
325 volute@g-vo.org 2309 <li>I've found this VO tutorial somewhere on the net ("on a mirror"). Is it
326     the latest version? If not, where can I find an update?</li>
327 volute@g-vo.org 2304 </ul>
328     </div> <!-- section regext-usecases -->
330     </div> <!-- section regext -->
332 marco.merot@gmail.com 2307 <div class="section">
333     <h2><a id="lang">Internationalization of VO Resources</a></h2>
334     <p>
335     The EURO-VO AIDA project WP5 put some effort also in translating tutorials
336     in different languages, meeting the needs for high schools and lower level
337     educational degrees when starting dissemination in astrophysics to an
338     audience not skilled enough with the english language. It would be an added
339     value in this case to be able to register an educational or
340     documental resource not only in english (as it is done currently with
341     standard VO resources) but also in other national languages.
342     </p>
343     <p>
344     Here what it would be nice to discuss is whether this means:
345     <ul>
346     <li>changing VOResource to allow different languages in resource
347     descriptions;</li>
348     <li>enable internazionalization in VO resources within existing
349     resources: one resource described in multiple languages</li>
350     <li>other...</li>
351     </ul>
352     </p>
353     </div> <!-- section lang -->
355 volute@g-vo.org 2304 </div> <!-- body -->
357     <div class="appendices">
358     <div class="section">
359     <h1>An appendix</h1>
360 volute@g-vo.org 2302 </div>
361     </div>
363     <div class="section-nonum">
364 volute@g-vo.org 2304 <h2><a id="references"/><span class="secnum"/>References</h2>
366     <?bibliography ivoadoc/refs?>
368     </div> <!-- section references -->
370 volute@g-vo.org 2302 <hr/>
371     </body>
372     </html>

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