Project Journal

The CLARET project aimed to explore the relationship between Learning Object Contextual metadata ( and the teaching and learning context as defined by working with practitioners. We built an ontology for the underlying infrastructure (metadata) and a agreed concept map for identifying, sharing and discovery of resources.


To create the concept maps a series of interviews with language teachers from the Universities of Southampton, Portsmouth, and Reading, Surrey and York were conducted, along with advice from the Modern Languages subject centre to form a consensus of the terms used in the map. We found that the language teachers were very enthusiastic and willing to spend time helping to develop resources, as well as participating in design activities. The concept maps have been developed with the e-languages community and are integral to the tools developed. The e-language centre at Southampton, who also hosts the subject centre, will continue to use these tools that they helped to develop.


These aims were achieved and based on the feedback from the final workshop held in Southampton in November 2007, the tools were well received.

Workshop Overview

London workshop (March 2007)


The first CLAReT workshop explain how the CLAReT project hopes to make learning Object Repositories easier to use. One of the highlights of the workshop was the introduction of the concept map tool and how it reflects the understanding of language teaching.  Community tools that would be useful to the project such as Web 2.0 websites were examined; and how these websites might be applied to repositories. Participants who attended the workshop were involved in a form hands on activity to aid better understanding of the project. This activity included a role play in scenarios; where participants took up a number of personas and enacted their given scenarios. The feedback on the workshop gave fresh insights into the project.


chrissie teacher_materials creator          louise independent learner                lyn course designer           roland teacher sabbatical                  ruth teaching assistant            tom secondary school teacher   

Chrissie (teacher)            Louise (independent learner)      Lyn (course designer)      Roland (teacher on sabbatical)      Ruth (teaching assistant)      Tom (secondary school teacher)



Portsmouth Workshop (April 2007)


A day workshop at the University of Portsmouth produced a wealth of information and detailed feedback. The functionalities of the concept map tool were explored in detail.


Reading Workshop (June 2007)


Discussions on concept map structure and concept map terminology.


Southampton Workshop (November 2007)


This marked the final workshop of CLAReT project.  The aim of the Southampton workshop was to show the community what the CLAReT and Murllo projects have produced and to test the working repository tool. There was also an opportunity for participants to try the tools and give the project co-ordinators a feedback. The discussion on the future of the tools to prepare a useable public version attracted interesting contributions from the workshop participants.

Overall Approach

The project was influence by the update to ePrints and the previous projects; L2O, CLARe, and the Eduserv-funded ‘Management, Use and Re-purposing of Language Learning Objects’ Project (MURLLO) project.


The project used a sample of re-usable learning objects (RLOs) provided through the L20 project that include contextual metadata in addition to UK LOM Core. The project integrated and engaged the fledgling MURLLO Community of Practice (CoP) in discussion and community contribution.  The CLAReT project developed a teaching and learning context ontology through a series of workshops. The experimental ePrints based Contextualised Learning Activity Repository (CLARe) developed by the University of Southampton was used as a test bed to align the CLAReT project with the E-Framework.


The software is freely available and currently is been used by the community. The project website and the software will be available for three years after the project has ended, until at least December 2010.


The final beneficiaries will be the students who will receive increased access and discovery of the pool of quality assured e-learning resources available online. However the direct beneficiaries will be e-language teachers. Through the use of the visual display of the concept map, along with the Web 2.0 tools for rating and commenting on the LOs, teachers will be encourage to share their expertise and good practice, that will assist with professional development for both experienced practitioners and those still in training.

Project Output

Deliverable 1:

Domain ontology and concept maps based on shared understanding of pedagogical experts from the Community of Practice.



Deliverable 2:

User validation of domain concept maps for Learning Object Repository



Workshops in London, Portsmouth and Reading

Presentations & outputs

Blog entries

Deliverable 3

Concept map navigation tool for ePrints Learning Object Repository. 



Deliverable 4:

An evaluation of the usability of Learning Object repository with the concept based interface will be carried out, involving peers from the Community of Practice




After each workshop questionnaires were analysed. These are available on the project website

Deliverable 5

Demonstration implementations of semantic web service tools to provide Learning Object discovery from ePrints Learning Object repository, integrating applicable social networking web services (e.g RSS, Flickr)


Deliverable 6:

The demonstration tools will be piloted with groups from the Community of Practice to evaluate their usability.



A series of Workshops:  Portsmouth, Lancaster, Reading, Southampton

Deliverable 7:

User guide and concept map tool programmer documentation


Project Website