Award for Excellence
Connectivity, and Convergence"
Award for Excellence is awarded annually by the New Media Conference to
recognize companies, organizations or individuals who have made a significant
contribution in the creation or development of New Media or the supporting
infrastructure of software tools, hardware or connectivity innovations.
Award for 2001 has been awarded to Murray Goldberg,
Founder and President of WebCT Canada. The press release is below.
***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***
January 24, 2001
OF TEACHING LED TO AWARD WINNER'S WEB SUCCESS
Five years ago, there were
few resources for teachers wanting to offer a web-based course-so UBC
computer scientist Murray Goldberg developed his own. Today WebCT is the
world's most popular online course management system. More than 148,000
faculty members at over 1,570 colleges and universities are using WebCT's
products and services to transform the educational experience for more
than 5.8 million students. In recognition of the contributions he has
made in applying new technology to education, Goldberg, a UVic grad, will
receive the Hyperion award at this year's new media Conference at UVic
from Feb. 11 to 13.
"Murray Goldberg's development
of the collaborative teaching and learning software WebCT is an outstanding
example of the application of New Media in the field of information technology
for teaching and learning in higher education," says conference chair
Martin Segger. "The award committee also noted that the rapid adoption
and widespread use of the software also illustrates the value of public-private
partnerships in the expanding field of e-learning."
Goldberg graduated from UVic
in 1985 and went on to earn his MSc from UBC. While working as a research
assistant studying high speed parallel communication protocols he offered
to teach a few courses as well. "I found I loved it," says Goldberg,
who won UBC's teaching award after just one year at the front of the classroom.
He immediately began investigating new ways to instruct his students.
"I wanted to explore the
effectiveness of the web as a teaching and learning tool so I had to teach
a web-based course but I found there was very little out there to help
me set one up," says Goldberg, who applied for and won a $50,000
teaching grant to assist him. "That first course took a year to build,
and I knew I couldn't spend $50,000 each time I wanted to create a course
so I built my own web-based tool. That was the beginning of WebCT."
In 1996, Goldberg went to
a Paris conference to present the results of his research comparing students'
performance with traditional and web-based learning (the group experiencing
a combination of the two did best). But conference attendees were more
interested in the software than its education results. Within six months,
100 institutions were using WebCT. Realizing he could not support that
many users with funding alone, Goldberg and UBC created a company to finance
the support network. Recently, it merged with another company to expand
the product's reach.
Goldberg, who is president
of WebCT/Canada, says he's pleased to hear he's this year's Hyperion award
recipient. "I hear it's a fantastic conference. It's the kind of
conference that I love; one that brings together people who are really
connected with the technology and those who love to teach."
For further information on
this year's New Media Conference, "Content, Connectivity and Convergence,"
check the conference website at www.maltwood.uvic.ca/nmc/2001/ or contact
conference coordinator Ed Oscapella at (250) 472-1690.