Cyberinfrastructure and cyberlearning

In today’s globalized world and world without borders, it’s influenced us to re-think how we do our businesses, how we connect with our research teams distributed all around the world and how learning process can be so innovative by having a mixture of face-to-face class with remote participation[1]. One of the ICT innovations that enable cyberinfrastructure and cyberlearning to happen is, of course no other than the internet.

With the advance technology which include the mixture of technological capabilities of the internet, high performance computing, advanced networking, in-home electronics, and mobile communications[2], its allows groups of individuals to work independently on tasks or projects that span national borders. Virtual teams are often categorized as geographically dispersed, where many members usually situated at different of locations.

Virtual teams can be homogenous and heterogeneous but often they are heterogeneous in nature, where many are multicultural and multinational. Virtual teams also usually very much dependent on electronic technologies for their daily interaction. To accelerating growth based on knowledge society vision, Universal Design framework contributes in developing collaborative tools that empower certain segment of society, such as persons with disabilities, indigenous people, poor households and others. The Universal Design framework very much plays a huge role in enabling cyberlearning that makes learning/ education is more accessible by vulnerable groups. It’s not only expanding social inclusion of vulnerable groups in the society, but also closing digital gaps based on gender, social status, disability and geographical areas[3].

Above all, in getting full benefits of cyberinfrastructure and cyberlearning, it requires coherent infrastructures such as a combination of quality of telecommunication network and communication media outlets i.e.: video conferencing, audio conferencing and computer-mediated communication (CMC). Both cyberinfrastructure and cyberlearning empowered our collaborations in businesses, research and learning thus, 3 (there) vital aspects need to be considered in our virtual teams’ collaboration. Firstly, people-to-people, where it is important to ensure that the collaborative tools in place are able to connect people in different set of environment and locations. Secondly, people-to-resources, the collaborative tools should have the capacity for the collaborators to share data, documents and organization of different documentation; and finally people-to-facilities, where the collaborative tools can provide environment for collaborators to meet and realize their collaboration.

[1] ‘The world is our campus’ by Derrick Cogburn and Diljya Kurup.

[2] The National Science Foundation. (2008). Fostering learning in the networked world: The cyberlearning opportunity and challenge a 21st century agenda for the National Science Foundation, pg. 8

[3] Myhill, William N   (2008).  Developing Accessible Cyberinfrastructure-Enabled Knowledge Communities in the National Disability Community: Theory, Practice, and Policy. Assistive technology. Vol. 20 (3), pg. 157

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