For years, engineers in the workplace have relied on films and videotapes produced by MIT's Center for Advanced Educational Services (CAES) to keep up with what's happening at the leading edge of their world.
Now, high school students can also look to the CAES-using the World Wide Web.
The CAES has announced a new program that combines presentations by MIT professors during regular high school classes, and an opportunity for follow-up activities in the days after the lecture using the World Wide Web.
The new program began February 29 when Professor Arnold I. Barnett, whose statistical studies of crime, air travel and Vietnam War service have drawn international attention, lectured to a Lexington High School class about the "uses and abuses" of statistics as presented in the news media. Dr. Barnett, who is professor of operations research and management at the Sloan School, addressed the Global Civilizations class. The lecture was recorded for editing and distribution to other high schools.
Professor Richard C. Larson, the CAES director, said the video will point to a designated URL to which students can send homework or submit questions and find references to other Web links. "It's a new form of Cliff notes," he said.
The server is part of MIT's Networked Multimedia Information Services (NMIS) project based in the CAES and funded by the National Science Foundation. One of the NMIS functions is to create indexed video databases aimed at K-12 and distribute the content via the Web. The server includes compressed video segments, a text of the audio of each video, teacher's guides and a search engine. One of these high-speed links has been established with Lexington High School.
The new program is the first in a series of CAES K-12 initiatives. For more information contact Tracy Pierce at or x3-5472.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on March 6, 1996.