Ishan Sudeera Abeywardena

Ishan Sudeera Abeywardena
University of Waterloo | UWaterloo · Centre for Extended Learning

PhD (Malaya), MSc, MSc (Brunel), BSc (Bangalore)
Sustainable technology, open educational resources, online learning and V/AR application development

About

80
Publications
46,478
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221
Citations
Introduction
A computer scientist by training, I have keen research interests in the technological aspects of OER, eLearning, MOOC and ODL. My technical interests include sentiment analysis, text mining, software development and mobile application development.
Additional affiliations
April 2013 - present
Wawasan Open University
Position
  • Broadening Access to Open Educational Resources through Effective Searching of Material
Description
  • The general objective of this project is to broaden access to OER through the provision of more accurate search methodologies.
May 2011 - present
University of Malaya
Position
  • Text Mining Approach to Faceted Search of Open Educational resources
Description
  • The research project concentrates on searching and locating the most relevant Open Educational Resources (OER) for teaching purposes using text mining algorithms and learning algorithms.
April 2011 - September 2011
Wawasan Open University
Position
  • Learning Outcome Manager (LOM) Implementation
Description
  • A 6 month project which investigated the co-relation between exam marks and achievement of learning outcomes.
Education
March 2011 - March 2015
University of Malaya
Field of study
  • Computer Science
September 2007 - October 2008
Brunel University London
Field of study
  • Engineering Management
September 2006 - October 2007
Brunel University London
Field of study
  • Wireless Enterprise Business Systems

Publications

Publications (80)
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this short paper, I will introduce the Open Extended Reality for Education Framework (OXREF), which is a conceptual framework proposing a holistic solution to XR object creation, implementation and deployment covering pedagogical, technical and administrative perspectives. Increasingly, many governments and institutions around the world are maki...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this workshop, I will introduce the Open Extended Reality for Education Framework (OXREF), which is a conceptual framework proposing a holistic solution to XR object creation, implementation and deployment covering pedagogical, technical and administrative perspectives. Increasingly, many governments and institutions around the world are making...
Presentation
Full-text available
The contribution of the OXREF framework is a holistic approach to XR mainstreaming in education starting with the creation of objects following OEP, deployment using the latest cloud-based technologies and FOSS and policy creation for scalability and sustainability.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Purpose – Extended Reality (XR) has gained traction as the next evolutionary step in teaching and learning accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Increasingly, many governments and institutions around the world are making major investments in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies preparing education systems for the future. How...
Presentation
Full-text available
The lack of centralized, rich, accurate and real-time management information about the online learning and professional development businesses of the Centre for Extended Learning (CEL) has been a longstanding hurdle to the expansion of the unit. As a potential solution, the CEL Systems team initiated the Management Information Dashboard (CEL-MID) p...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Centre for Extended Learning (CEL) Systems team initiated a project in Fall 2019 to inventorize all CEL computing assets for better management, tracking, renewals, needs analysis, theft prevention and budgeting. All computing equipment, including desktops, laptops, keyboards, mice, projectors etc., were asset tagged using unique QR code sticker...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This session is facilitated by Dr Ishan Abeywardena, Associate Director – Systems, Jason Greatrex, Support Team Manager and Kanchan Dhiman, Information Systems Analyst at the Centre for Extended Learning, University of Waterloo, from Canada. Participants can expect to hear about: - How the lack of centralized, rich, accurate and real-time manageme...
Presentation
Full-text available
Explores the mainstreaming of OER using the Horizontal framework and mainstreaming checklist.
Article
Full-text available
The government of Cameroon has been increasingly preoccupied with the quality of learning outcomes and the lack of learning resources at all levels of the education system. Research on similar educational systems in Sub-Saharan Africa and beyond indicate that Ministries of Education are exploring the potential of open educational resources (OER) to...
Presentation
Full-text available
There is immense potential in open educational resources (OER) for encouraging systemic change within academic institutions toward increasing access and equity in education. The perceived benefits of accessing and using OER include gaining access to the best possible resources, promoting scientific research and education as publicly open activities...
Article
Full-text available
Over the last 10 years, the state of sexual and reproductive health in Cameroon has been challenging with rising levels of sexually transmitted diseases, the high fertility rate, and high infant and maternal mortality rates. Some researchers attributed these challenges to the limited number and quality of sexual and reproductive health personnel wo...
Presentation
Full-text available
Open Educational Resources (OER) are fast becoming a major part of the Education landscape especially with the new thrust towards “open”. Conceptually, OER are a sensible and cost‐effective way of incorporating quality material, including multimedia, into a particular teaching and learning scenario. Realistically however, this is easier said than d...
Article
Full-text available
In the race towards achieving the Education 2030 agenda, open educational resources (OER) act as a key enabler for sustainable development goal 4 (SDG4). Leading to the 2014 Regional Focal Points Meeting, Commonwealth of Learning's (COL) Focal Point for Tonga had identified top priorities for the country where COL can further support the national a...
Presentation
Full-text available
This guest lecture introduces the concepts of Virtual Reality (VR) and 360-degree immersive video into teaching and learning. In this lecture, I define the current paradigms on the use of VR and immersive video followed by how and why we should move from traditional pedagogies to more future proof ones. Further, I introduce several do-it-yourself r...
Presentation
Full-text available
The open educational resources (OER) movement is fast gaining traction on a global scale. However, in the global south, there is still a skills gap in terms of developing, using and assessing OER for an enriched teaching and learning experience. This workshop aims to build the capacity of the participants to address this skills gap and to promote t...
Presentation
Full-text available
Access to relevant learning resources is an important aspect in ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all as outlined in SDG4. The Commonwealth of Learning (COL) has identified the development of OER as a potential answer to these challenges. A total of 29 provincial OER policies and guidelines w...
Presentation
Full-text available
This presentation explores the latest technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality, 360 videos, blockchain and instant messaging from an Educational perspective. It relates how these technologies must transform open educational resources (OER).
Article
Full-text available
Access to relevant learning resources is an important aspect in ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all as outlined in the sustainable development goal 4 (SDG4). The Commonwealth of Learning (COL) has identified the development of open educational resources (OER) as a potential answer to these...
Presentation
Full-text available
SMART OER are built upon the edifice of appropriate and affordable technology, that is accessible to people with disabilities and usable in multiple languages. When an OER is developed for people with disabilities, it is more accessible to everyone, and a course is developed in such a way that it can be easily machine translated, making cross-borde...
Presentation
Full-text available
The Commonwealth of Learning shares a strong partnership with UNESCO. Five years ago COL and UNESCO organised the first World OER Congress that resulted in the Paris OER Declaration. We believe that knowledge is our common wealth and that OER have tremendous potential for promoting equitable and inclusive quality education and lifelong learning for...
Article
Full-text available
With the rise of OER and multimedia such as YouTube videos, many academic institutions are becoming mindful of the richness they bring into the teaching and learning process. Given that multimedia resources cannot be directly integrated into printed material, the only available alternative is to print hyperlinks, which teachers and learners can man...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose - There is immense potential in open educational resources (OER) for encouraging systemic change within academic institutions towards increasing access and equity in education. This paper proposes an empirical framework and a checklist for mainstreaming OER in an academic institution. Design/methodology/approach – The empirical framework...
Presentation
Full-text available
This lecture was delivered to the new cohort of PhD students at Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU), Pakistan. The focus of the lecture was to inspire them in new directions of research in the field of Open Educational Resources based on the outputs of the 2nd World OER Congress and the Ljubljana OER Action Plan.
Presentation
Full-text available
Access to relevant learning resources is an important aspect in ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all as outlined in SDG4. The Commonwealth of Learning (COL) has identified the development of OER as a potential answer to these challenges. A total of 29 provincial OER policies and guidelines w...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The World OER Congress 2012, organized by the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and UNESCO with the generous support of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, led to the adoption of the OER Paris Declaration1 by delegates from 70 countries. At that time, the global open educational resources (OER) community focused on securing governmental support...
Presentation
Full-text available
Presented by Professor Asha Kanwar, President & CEO, Commonwealth of Learning, at the Latin America and Caribbean Open Educational Resources Regional Conference, Sao Paulo, Brazil, on 3 April 2017. Co-written with Dr Sanjaya Mishra, COL and Dr Ishan Abeywardena, COL.
Presentation
Full-text available
The use of open re-use licenses and Internet technologies have long promised to reduce barriers to education by making it more distributed, equitable, and open. Indeed, the promise of open education can trace its roots to the the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations 1948, which states ”everyone has a right to educati...
Presentation
Full-text available
Presented by Professor Asha Kanwar, President & CEO, Commonwealth of Learning, Dr. Sanjaya Mishra, COL, and Dr. Ishan Abeywardena, COL, at the Asia Open Educational Resources Regional Consultation, 1 December 2016, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Presentation
Full-text available
Presentation made at PCF8 Conference, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 27-30 November, 2016
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The world is rapidly moving towards a digital culture where teaching and learning is migrated to cyberspace from a conventional brick and mortar classroom. Given that eLearning and mobile learning are attractive propositions for countries with robust technological infrastructure, the global south is still struggling to mainstream digital methods of...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
With the objective of providing direction in the use of Open Educational Resources (OER) to increase access to and support quality teaching and learning in the school education system in Sri Lanka, an advocacy program was conducted leading to the development of draft OER policies for the Provincial Ministries of Education, representing the nine pro...
Book
Full-text available
This study was conducted as part of the OER for Skills Development project of COL, supported by The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. The objective of the study was to collect baseline data from Commonwealth institutions with respect to the development, use and reuse of OER; the availability of support; and challenges faced in fostering the use...
Presentation
Full-text available
This is a guest lecture on the road map of how to move from OER to an Open Culture delivered to the 2016 PhD batch of Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU), Pakistan
Book
Full-text available
The Educational App Development Toolkit for Teachers and Learners is designed to introduce the basic and some intermediate concepts of Android app development on the App Inventor (AI2) platform. It provides hands-on activities and tutorials to use the Designer and Blocks Editor components of App Inventor to create apps that can be readily downloade...
Presentation
Full-text available
Keynote Address delivered at the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Directors (CVCD) Conference 2015, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Presentation
Full-text available
This presentation discusses how to deliver a flipped classroom lecture and looks at how this ‘ideal’ concept could be practically implemented in a University setting.
Presentation
Full-text available
The Android operating system (OS) is currently dominating the smart phone and tablet markets. The Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) frameworks and the ease of use have made Android the most sought-after OS for use by mobile device manufacturing giants. With thousands of apps available through the ‘Google Play’ store, Android provides a feature r...
Presentation
Full-text available
This is a Guest Lecture delivered to PhD Scholars at the Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU), Pakistan on 7th October 2015. The presentation explores the current global trends in Open Educational Resources (OER). The specific topics covered include a brief introduction to OER; defining the “O” in OER; how licensing works with the new Creative Commo...
Thesis
Full-text available
The open educational resources (OER) movement has gained considerable momentum in the past few years. According to the Paris OER Declaration, OER can be defined as “teaching, learning and research materials in any medium, digital or otherwise, that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits no-cost access,...
Article
Full-text available
Traditionally, Android app development is a highly specialized field reserved only for software engineers and programmers. However, the massive demand for customized apps has led to the democratization of Android app development through the concept of ‘Visual Programming’. Visual Programming is a concept which allows nonprogrammers to build powerfu...
Research
Full-text available
Virtual collaboration is coming into view as a viable alternative to outsourced software development. The purpose of our work is to identify some of the key factors which contribute to the success of virtual collaborative software development projects and practical concerns for implementation. Based on the findings, a conceptual framework is develo...
Chapter
Full-text available
The Open Educational Resources (OER) movement has gained significant momentum recently as a global effort culminating in the 2012 Paris OER declaration. However, the purist definition of OER has blurred since then, morphing into Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC). Even though OER is a significant part of the MOOC movement, it might not be a definin...
Article
Full-text available
Wawasan Open University (WOU) was established in 2007 with the sole aim of providing affordable and accessible higher education opportunities to working adults in the fields of business, technology, education and liberal studies. As part of its Open Distance Learning (ODL) delivery, WOU provides tutorial support for students every semester through...
Presentation
Full-text available
This technical workshop focuses on the current issues faced by the academic community, especially in Open and Distance Learning (ODL), with respect to searching for credible, relevant and academically useful open educational resources (OER). The workshop will cover four key aspects: (1) the current OER search dilemma; (2) the concept of metadata; (...
Presentation
Full-text available
The Open Educational Resources (OER) movement has gained significant momentum recently as a global effort culminating in the 2012 Paris OER declaration. However, the purist definition of OER has blurred since then morphing into Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC). Even though OER are a significant part of the MOOC movement, it might not be a definin...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Open Educational Resources (OER) movement has gained significant momentum recently as a global effort culminating in the 2012 Paris OER declaration. However, the purist definition of OER has blurred since then morphing into Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC). Even though OER are a significant part of the MOOC movement, it might not be a definin...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In recent years, the Open Educational Resources (OER) movement has achieved considerable success within the academic community with respect to advocacy of the concept. As a result, many organisations such as the Commonwealth of Learning (COL), UNESCO and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), in partnership with academic institutions...
Article
Full-text available
The open educational resources (OER) movement has gained momentum in the past few years. With this new drive towards making knowledge open and accessible, a large number of OER repositories have been established and made available online throughout the world. However, the inability of existing search engines such as Google, Yahoo!, and Bing to effe...
Article
Full-text available
The constant emphasis on maintaining a high level of quality in the Open Distance Learning (ODL) self di-rected courses delivered at Wawasan Open University (WOU) demands the accurate assessment of course learning outcomes (CLO). The summative and formative assessment components of each course module are, in theory, designed to effectively measure...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Open Educational Resources (OER) are fast gaining traction amongst the academic community as a viable means of increasing access and equity in education. The concept of OER is of especial significance to the marginalised communities in the Global South where distance education is prominent due to the inability of conventional brick and mortar insti...
Chapter
Full-text available
Higher education has experienced phenomenal growth in all parts of Asia over the last two decades. This expansion, coupled with a diversity of provisions, has meant that more and more young Asians are experiencing tertiary education within their own countries. Notwithstanding this massive expansion of provisions, equitable access is still a challen...
Chapter
Full-text available
Open educational resources (OER) are a relatively new phenomenon in the Malaysian higher education (HE) sector. Although there have been "lone rangers" strongly advocating the use of OER in the country, many HE institutions, including Wawasan Open University, Open University of Malaysia and Asia e University, are yet to make use and reuse of OER a...
Chapter
Full-text available
Being one of the youngest open and distance learning institutions in Asia, Wawasan Open University (WOU) recently embarked on the journey towards adopting and adapting open educational resources (OER) as self-directed course material for its adult learners pursuing their undergraduate degrees. Moving away from the economically non-viable model of p...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Open Educational Resources (OER) movement has gained momentum in the past few years. With this new drive towards making knowledge open and accessible, a large number of OER repositories have been established and made available online throughout the globe. However, despite the fact that these repositories hold a large number of high quality mate...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Open Educational Resources (OER) are fast becoming a global phenomenon which could potentially provide free access to knowledge for the masses. Since the inception of this concept, governmental and non-governmental grants alongside generous philanthropy have given rise to a vast array of OER repositories all over the world. With this movement gaini...
Article
Full-text available
As an open and distance learning (ODL) institution, Wawasan Open University (WOU) employs a blended approach for delivering courses to its undergraduate and postgraduate students, who are entirely adult learners. In this approach, the use of a learning management system (LMS) is absolutely crucial for student support as well as the enhancement of t...
Book
Full-text available
Open Educational Resources (OER) are a relatively new phenomenon which is fast gaining academic credibility as well as the attention of policy makers on a global scale. With increased funding by governmental and non-governmental organisations paired with generous philanthropy, the volume of rich OER available freely to the masses has grown exponent...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The OERAsia study (http://www.oerasia.org/oerasiasurvey) was conducted to explore the use of Open Educational Resources (OER’s) in the Asian region especially with the view to encouraging the development of an OER community that would share learning resources across institutions and nations. Several regions representative of South, South East and E...
Presentation
Full-text available
The study suggests four points for action: (i) further support and capacity building in the use of digital resources and OER; (ii) fostering a culture of collaboration among institutions; (iii) raising awareness and capacity building in open content licensing; and (iv) the establishment of institutional policies to facilitate the wider use of OER....
Article
Full-text available
Open educational resources (OER) are a global phenomenon that is fast gaining credibility in many academic circles as a possible solution for bridging the knowledge divide. With increased funding and advocacy from governmental and nongovernmental organisations paired with generous philanthropy, many OER repositories, which host a vast array of re-s...
Book
Full-text available
TCC242/05 Web Database Applications course focuses on the theory and application of server-side development tools used to develop dynamic database-driven web applications. The course will introduce students to then Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP architecture commonly known as LAMP. PHP is a widely used server side scripting language which will run on...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
With the rise of social networking portals such as facebook, twitter and myspace, the masses congregate and exchange ideas, ideologies and knowledge more liberally and more frequently. As an increasing number of learners as well as educators turn to social networking for education, Open Distance Learning (ODL) also needs to evolve to ride the wave...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Being an Open Distance Learning (ODL) institution, Wawasan Open University (WOU) employs a blended approach for delivering courses to its undergraduate and postgraduate students who are entirely adult learners. In this approach, the use of a Learning Management System (LMS) is absolutely crucial for student support as well as the enhancement of the...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The constant emphasis on maintaining a high level of quality in the Open Distance Learning (ODL) self directed course modules developed and delivered at Wawasan Open University (WOU) demands the accurate assessment of learner centric Outcome Based Education (OBE). The summative and formative assessment components of each course module are, in theor...
Article
Full-text available
Constant emphasis and close attention paid to Quality Assurance in the production of Open Distance Learning (ODL) course materials at Wawasan Open University (WOU) had necessitated that the whole process of course materials development be clearly defined and tracked systematically. Although a Standard Operating Procedure already exists, yet its imp...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Constant emphasis and close attention paid to Quality Assurance in the production of Open Distance Learning (ODL) course materials at Wawasan Open University (WOU) had necessitated that the whole process of course materials development be clearly defined and tracked systematically. Although a Standard Operating Procedure already exists, yet its imp...
Data
Full-text available
Welcome to the Open Education Resources survey which aims to identify the current state of play in the Asian Region with respect to OER practice. This survey mainly concentrates on, but not limited to, the current situation in Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, India, Philippines, Japan, China and Hong Kong. The main objective of this study is to establ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The development and delivery of an Open Distance Learning (ODL) course comprises of many stages and many key stakeholders. Coordinated by an academic course coordinator, an ODL course has a number of parallels with a virtual project managed using electronic mediums and without much face-to-face interaction amongst the team members who collaborate f...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper focuses on the design of new curriculum at Wawasan Open University to meet the differential needs of part-time adult learners, working professionals who have many years of prior work experience in the field, maintain full-time employment while earning their degree and use their employment setting for the field work practicum. Specificall...
Thesis
Full-text available
With globalization and the internet the world has become a smaller arena for business war. Prior to this revolution Eastern and Western business strategy concentrated mainly on their respective regions and business success in smaller markets. Eastern business strategy mainly adopts Sun Tzu’s “Art of War” as the main strategy manuscript whilst the W...