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There is a lot of educational software on the market, but little of it can be said to be revolutionary. Despite all the talk about education and computers, the educational software revolution has yet to begin. All educational software can be placed in categories of games (edutainment), simulations, reference software, and tutorials. Choosing excellent software is also complicated by the buzzwords that current advertisers use, including multimedia, edutainment, interactivity, CD-ROM, and graphics. Beyond these buzzwords, there are some real criteria for excellent software as follows: (1) symbolic graphics; (2) adaptability; (3) student control; (4) the medium matched to the content; (5) relational content; (6) hierarchy of instruction; (7) thorough treatment of the content; (8) knowledge of results (feedback); and (9) predictable results. The production of excellent software requires a technology (in the sense of techniques or methods, rather than devices) that includes knowledge representation, instructional design, and media application. (SLD)

Descriptors: Computer Assisted Instruction, Computer Games, Computer Graphics, Computer Managed Instruction, Computer Simulation, Computer Software Development, Computer Software Evaluation, Computer Software Selection, Courseware, Educational Media, Elementary Secondary Education, Evaluation Criteria, Feedback, Higher Education, Knowledge Level, Learner Controlled Instruction, Quality Control, Technological Advancement

Lifelong Software, Inc., 40 West 76th St. #1, New York, NY 10023 ($3; quantity price, $2.50).

Autor: De Laurentiis, E. C.


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