News and contacts
We're having a problem with our search engine at the moment, so we've disabled it to avoid users hitting errors. Sorry about this, but in the meantime you can still search the site using Google from your web browser. Just open another tab, go to Google and put Research Observatory in front of what you want to search for.
Help and guidance on how to use the RO
Welcome to all our site visitors from around the world
The explicit copyright statement
About the Research Observatory project and how to contact us
Read about the Research Observatory in Second Life (SL) on our blog. If you're a SL "resident" you can visit the RO in SL from here
Our Technology Enhanced Learning Research website is now up and running, so please visit us and see how we put some of our own guidance on research into practice ourselves!
Take a walk through a gallery of pictures showing the RO in Second Life. NB. this will open an executable file on your computer to load the gallery viewer.
The Research Observatory at UWE (RO) is an online research teaching and learning resource developed by the e-learning development unit, in collaboration with academic and professional colleagues at UWE. It is intended to help you to find appropriate learning materials to help you in your research studies. It is important to stress that this site is an open resource that draws upon a range of sources for study and discussion and has many contributors. It does not take any particular stance on research and does not claim to say what UWE's view or policy is on any aspect of research. In this sense, although this is not a wiki site and you cannot upload material directly to the site, the notion of sharing information through the RO has more in common with Wikipedia than it does with research text books. Research approaches and methods vary greatly, and individual tutors and students will have their own views and preferences. The materials here are for information and to provoke thought, and we would welcome contributions from members of UWE staff for developing further materials. If you would like to become involved in the RO project in this way, or if you have any queries or ideas, please do not hesitate to contact us - see the About link in the left hand navigation panel.
How does the RO work?
The resource is designed to enable study in different contexts, and you can choose any of them, depending upon how you like to study online. At present there are two contexts available, metaphoric and literal, but we will be working with students in the next year to design further contexts that suit their learning preferences and cognitive styles. You can change the context at any point, without having to come back here to choose a different one. The subject matter you can study is exactly the same in all the contexts - it is the online environment in which you study it that is different. Once you have located material that you might like to link to directly in the future, you can bookmark the URL in the normal way and the next time you access the RO you will see the material in the same context. Please feel free to experiment with the different contexts.
This context uses the star map and observatory metaphor. You will enter a virtual observatory where you can go into "rooms" that cover different research subjects, in the form of "constellations" of learning materials. The room contexts are explained in terms of the metaphor and you can see the whole "information universe" by using interactive maps to navigate your way around the observatory. If you are new to using this context the "enter" link above, which takes you to the context home page, might be the best place to get started. If you are used to using the map, you can go straight to it from the "map" link above.
This context uses no metaphor and fewer graphics. It concentrates upon textual explanations of research topics, together with a navigation system that presents the information in a traditional, hierarchical way, i.e. topics and subsidiary learning units. The core information on research is the same as in the metaphoric context, but the environment is more subdued, less strong visually and more muted in the colours it uses. The topic headings concentrate upon text and don't use diagrams or think maps.