Wednesday, 8 April 2009

BbWorld Europe (Day Two) - Xerte Toolkits

Again, I missed the keynote this morning due to my cold/flu having gotten worse but I did make it to a talk by Pat Lockley and Gil Fourte on their use of Xerte Toolkits at Nottingham. I did make some notes on this but TechDis provide a good explanation which I've pilfered to save myself some typing:
The information services team at the University of Nottingham have developed a free learning object editor – Xerte - that produces interactive, rich media learning objects that run in a Flash player. 

Xerte is an XML editor and run time engine that makes it easy to create and deploy interactive learning objects that are highly accessible and SCORM compliant. Xerte helps you focus on interactive design by providing tools that are fit for purpose and easy to use. 
You can see examples of the kinds of materials you can create at this site here.

There's more information on the software as well as the option to download it free here.

Pat has developed a Powerlink1 between Xerte and Web CT2, which makes it very easy for Course Instructors to create and add interactive learning objects direct without leaving their course.

Much of the talk was a demonstration of these tools which looked very impressive. Pat made mention of how accessible they were with keyboard shortcuts and concessions to screen readers all taken into account. Hence the TechDis description given above.

The toolkit itself is used by 250 to 300 users the world over and is certainly worth a look if you're looking for learning object creation solutions.


1. Like a Building Block in Blackboard Classic
2. Now rebranded as one of the various Blackboard editions; Nottingham have kept the old name to save confusion

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