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Directed by Steven R. Lerman

[CECI became a formal part of a newly reorganized CAES with an MIT-wide scope in 1995. More recently it again became an independent research center under the auspices the MIT Provost Office. My earliest association with CECI was as an outside researcher during my doctoral work on a qualitative study of early educational computing projects that used the AthenaMuse authoring environment (Hopper, 1993). A few years later, I served as a Visiting Scientist at CECI where I was first responsible for editing the final documentation of Athena Muse 2, a java-like authoring language (AM2). Then later, I was responsible for documenting and writing a final report about the accomplishments of the Networked Multimedia Information Services research consortium that was co-funded by NSF, IBM and Turner Learning (NMIS) Finally, sitll later, I contributed to writing some proposals to funding agencies and corporations before becoming a Postdoctoral Associate in the newly founded Comparative Media Studies (CMS) graduate program where I served as the Managing Editor of the flagship project, Media in Transition (MiT) through my role in the MIT Communications Forum (MITCF) which sponsored the project.]

The Center for Educational Computing Initiatives (CECI) is a preeminent research division that focuses on advanced technologies emerging for educational uses, and evaluates their effectiveness. CECI shares its findings and recommendations regarding new technologies in education through published research reports. Projects at CECI focus on enabling technologies for educational applications, including authoring systems, toolkits or libraries of computer code that make the creation of effective computer applications easier and less expensive. In addition, the center also undertakes authoring of new educational applications using available and pre-competitive technologies, and finally CECI evaluates how computer technology affects education, particularly the extent to which innovations in computer applications improve the quality of education.
CECI's core expertise is the creation and management of large scale multimedia collections. They have developed major archives of digital media in diverse areas, including Shakespearean studies, foreign languages, Chinese film and Women's Studies. New initiatives are just starting in the area of Newtonian mechanics and film studies. All of these projects involve substantial commitments of time and intellectual energy at MIT and are centered at CECI. The problems of indexing, searching and retrieving and reusing these huge content repositories are shared across these seemingly diverse initiatives.

[1993 Version from Doctoral Thesis]

The Center for Educational Computing Initiatives (CECI) is an MIT-wide research and development center devoted to designing and studying innovative applications of computational and communications technologies in education. Since the end of Project Athena in 1991, the Center for Educational Computing Initiatives has carried forward the research on multimedia started at Project Athena's Visual Computing Group through the AthenaMuse Software Consortium. The research undertaken by CECI centers around the development of multiplatform authoring environments and the creation of specific, educational computer applications, often involving the use of multimedia. The largest single project underway at CECI is the design and implementation of AthenaMuse, an authoring system for distributed, multimedia applications that will run on multiple hardware and software platforms. This initiative is supported by a consortium of industry, university and public sector organizations. CECI is also working on applications of use in K-12, university and life-long education. CECI's projects often involve partnerships with other institutions, including museums, libraries, archives, educational foundations, and other educational institutions.

When project Athena came to an end in June of '91, the people in the Visual Computing Group, instead of going into the service delivery organization, which merged with Information Systems, went into the AthenaMuse software consortium, which is part of CECI.

The AthenaMuse Software Consortium is an industry-sponsored research and development consortium at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The goal of the Consortium is to produce a powerful, flexible, and open authoring environment for creating distributed, multimedia computing applications. (Hopper, 1993)

on the web

CECI Web Page

Mary E. Hopper [MEHopper] | MEHopper@TheWorld.com [posted 01/01/01 | revised 12/09/06]