Universitšt Duisburg-Essen
Research/Tools and databases for the organisation.../VDB

Tool for the management and maintenance of course data – VDB

VDB is an internet-supported tool for the management of the content of courses and their associated lecturers. The system is modularly built and enables the management of the contents dependent on the particular user's status. Mainly, the lecturers can maintain the content of their lecture independently.

. With this system, it is possible to:

  • manage courses, modules, veranstaltung and lecturers,
  • draw up course schemes
  • create personal and module reference books for accreditation

The database structure behind the tool is geared towards the makeup of a course. In the process, the functionality of the tool is designed such that the maintenance effort for each individual is minimised.

A course is made up of phases. Every course of study consists of different course modules in compulsory, core elective and elective subjects. These in turn consist of different academic activity which in turn are subdivided into different components (lecture, exercise, practicals, seminar ). The configuration of the academic activity into modules conforms to a content-wise or thematic abstract but does not reflect the predetermined progression of a course of study. This is reflected in the form of a course scheme. Depending on what information on a course one wants to obtain, the user must be offered different representations (module view, curriculum view).

The data essential for the representation are Course master data (Description of course, Constitution of academic activity and modules, and the course structure), Module master data (Description of module, Constitution of modules and the objectives ) and the academic activity master data (Contents of academic activity, learning targets, language of instruction, prerequisites, recommended literature). With these master data, course views and syllabus or module reference books that can be viewed on a screen or printed out are designed and generated respectively.

The VDB tool performs two primary tasks. On the one hand, it serves the general maintenance of academic activity content and simultaneously the provision of this information for students. On the other hand, the maintenance effort for administrative personnel should be reduced by delegating the maintenance of content task to those responsible. For the reduction of a central maintenance effort, a decentralised administration of content was developed. Every lecturer can now maintain his own lecture information and is therewith also responsible for the correct descripition. Even the description of the content and objectives of modules or courses can now directly be entered by the responsible, though the sensitive master and structure data remain under the control of a central administrator in order to ensure that information pertaining to the structure of a course, such as number of credit points, credit hours or the allocated semester in which the lecture should take place, is not inadvertently altered by the lecturers.

Another important component is data exportation. The exportation of data includes a representation in Microsoft Excel as well as Microsoft Word. Even in the course of the accreditation of courses, a list of all courses (syllabus) according to modules, a list of modules with their lectures as well as diverse statistical data is needed. In the standard export functions, two output possibilities are offered in all views:

  • Printer-friendly version
  • Export to Microsoft Word

For the extended export functions, some more complex exportation possibilities in german and english are additionally available to privilaged users:

  • Module reference book including courses, module description and lecture description
  • Personal reference book
  • Description of all courses with a list of assigned modules
  • Description of all modules with a list of all assigned lectures
  • Course scheme ordered by semester
  • Course scheme ordered by modules

On this page https://www.fb9dv.uni-duisburg.de/vdb the tool can be seen in action.

Funded projects in the area of work

Publications in the area of work

Theses in the area of work

Contact (Dipl.-Ing. Frank Schwarz)

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