Using Semantic Web Technologies to Build an Educational Knowledge Base and Digital Library

H.N. Keeling (USA)


Digital libraries, semantic web, educational technology


Over the past few years the Semantic Web has grown into a useful tool in Web-based learning and teaching. Many believe that if the information on the Web were harnessed and processed into useful knowledge, its benefits to the field of education would be unlimited. This paper describes a research effort, called the Freedmen's Bureau Project, aimed at doing this. This effort seeks to enhance the effectiveness of the Web in teaching and research technology by creating an educational knowledge base, an associated digital library and web-accessible software for its creation and maintenance. Moreover, this project will preserve and disseminate many valuable historical documents collected by the Freedmen's Bureau during the early 1900s. Also, this paper discusses the initial components of an advanced software system that is a major outcome of this research. The system, called the Advanced Knowledge Acquisition and Dissemination System (AKADS), utilizes Semantic Web technologies and a hybrid set of software components. Knowledge based components are under development to make this knowledge available to teachers, students, and researchers via the Web. The contribution of this research is that it demonstrates a practical use the evolving technologies of the Semantic Web, while creating a valuable educational resource.

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