Project News / Events
Participation in ICETA 2009
ICETA 2009 was 7th International Conference on Emerging eLearning Technologies and Applications and it was held from 19 to 20 November in Stará Lesná, The High Tatras, Slovakia. As it was partly combined with the last project partner meeting several project partners participated in the conference both as active and passive participants.
The conference was organized in close collaboration of the Ministry of Education and the American Chamber of Commerce in the Slovak Republic, and leading academic, public and private institutions in Slovakia and abroad. Cisco Systems Slovakia was the general partner of the event organized by elfa, s.r.o. The conference was held under the patronage of Ján Mikolaj, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education in Slovakia, Anton Čižmár, Rector of Technical University of Košice, and the Slovak Rectors’ Conference.
During the 2 conference days almost 80 papers and posters were presented by authors from 14 countries. It was possible to watch the conference online and participate in the discussion forum within the videoconference streaming. Two of the papers and posters were presented in the context of GENEXIS project. One paper ‘Pilot Implemetation of GenExis Testing System in Slovakia’ was prepared by researcher Miroslav Michalko and project manager František Jakab from Elfa s.r.o. and presented in the poster section. The second paper ‘GenExis Education’ was prepared by project technical manager Valērijs Nikitins and project coordinator Vladislavs Mazurs from Data Pro Group Ltd. and presented by Valērijs Nikitins in the conference. Both papers were also published in the conference proceedings that are available in printed or CD format.
Other passive participants included Lita Akmentina (Data Pro Group, project coordinator assistant), Linda Gabrusenoka (Business Innovation Centre of Latvian Electronic Industry, project manager), Mihails Gorskis (Daugavpils University, researcher) and Robin Matheson (Accent International Language Consultancy, project technical manager).
Moreover Data Pro Group Ltd. participated in the conference with an information stand on GenExis. The information was prepared in both English and Slovak languages in brochure format as well as rolling presentation and demo CD’s.
The success of this conference was mainly highlighted by the opportunity to directly communicate with the key people of educational system in Slovakia as well as by the chance to exchange information and experience on most recent achievemts in the field of ICT and education.
Participation in 4th Daugavpils Science Festival
For forth year in a row Daugavpils University was organizing unique event in Latvia – 4th Daugavpils Science festival that took place from 9 – 13 November, 2009. As usually the main event was Science Town located in the lobby of the Daugavpils University building in Parādes street where GenExis software was also presented. For one day the festival was also visited by the representative of SIA Data Pro Grupa Linda Mazure in order to consult visitors of the festival on the project and the GenExis system. Moreover all through the festival it was possible to pick up information leaflets on GenExis and the project as well as watch rolling presentation on the GenExis software.
Owing to the support of friends and partners there were 65 different activities included in the festival agenda this year: open lectures, workshops, discussions, presentations, exhibitions, competitions, student’s science parliament and others in various fields of science – biology, environmental science, literature, art, sociology, economics, history, physics, pedagogy, biotechnology, genetics, IT, physiology etc. All the activities were meant for various target groups, for example, games workshop was meant for kids aged 1,5 – 8, science parliament – for the high school pupils, discussions – for university students, lectures – for teachers etc. However most of the activities were meant for anyone with interest in science and anyone could come around and join in! The activities attracted the attention of not only the visitors of the festival but also simple passer-bys – students and staff members of Daugavpils University as well as guests of the university. Special attention to the Science Town was received from USA ambassador Judith G. Garber, who pointed out that it is necessary to communicate with the society and enhance the communication about science.
There were approximately 2500 visitors that attended the activities of the 4th Daugavpils Science festival. Among them were pupils and teachers as well as entrepreneurs and other interesents. The organizers of the science festival have observed the tendency that several teachers organize joint visits with their pupils several years in a row because it is a great opportunity to demonstrate things that are impossible to realize in the school environment. During the festival it was possible to find out the latest news in various research fields, test ones knowledge, see and try to work with latest science equipment, talk to the scientists and simply obtain information on various subjects.
Contributors of the 4th Daugavpils Science festival: VAS Latvijas Dzelzceļš, European Science Events Association, Latgale Zoo, Robert Schuman French Culture Centre in Riga, Embassy of Sweden, Embassy of Finland, Swedish Culture Foundation, Swedish institute, SIA Data Pro Grupa, Junior Achievement Latvia, information portal www.d-fakti.lv, SIA Fazer maiznīcas, SIA Baltijas Lāzeru centrs, Art Academy of Latvia, Latgale planning region European Union structure funds information centre, Platforma Music.
Participation in exhibition ‘School 2009’
Data Pro Group Ltd. participated in the international exhibition ‘School 2009’ that took place in the international exhibition centre Ķīpsala (Riga, Latvia) from 26th February till 1st March 2009. During the exhibition it was possible to get acquainted with the GenExis system and the project ‘Computer based Exercise Generation and Evaluation System for Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry Subjects – GenExis’.
Data Pro Group Ltd. entered the exhibition as a software developer and distributor. Three members of the project staff were working in the informative stand at all times and the stand itself occupied floor space of 6 sq. m. Informative brochures on the project, the GenExis system and Data Pro Group Ltd. were distributed to all interested visitors. Moreover a rolling presentation on the project aims and objectives, partners, activities and results was constantly demonstrated in the informative stand.
The representatives of Data Pro Group Ltd. provided all the participants and visitors of the exhibition with the following information:
- Overall options of the Genexis system functionality;
- GenExis adaptation and approbation process in the project partnership countries;
- Feedback and recommendations that have been received during the project;
- Planned activities and results of the project;
- Data Pro Group Ltd. company’s profile and main activities.
Feedback from the visitors of the exhibition
The exhibition was mainly visited by pupils that were acquiring information on further study opportunities after finishing secondary school or high school. When introduced to the GenExis system, pupils admitted that learning via internet would be a lot more exciting than studying everything from books. At the same time large interest was directed at the exercise generation principle which resulted in a conclusion – “It means that we won’t be able to cheat anymore!”
This last phrase was the main attraction for teachers. From their point of view GenExis usage could provide benefits in reducing the time spent on preparation of the lessons – exercises, step-by-step solutions and correct answers are available to the teachers straight away. There was also interest in the project and the feedback that has been provided by the teachers that are participating in the project. As another beneficial feature was seen the option to print out individual tests for each pupil.
Particularly large interest in GenExis system was demonstrated by vocational schools and enterprises that train their staff and provide in-service training courses to increase their qualification, e.g., for car mechanics.
Participation in ICETA 2008
GENEXIS project technical manager Valērijs Ņikitins from Data Pro Group Ltd. participated in International Conference ICETA 2008 from 11 to 13 September 2008 which took place in Stará Lesná, The High Tatras, Slovakia
ICETA 2008 was 6th International Conference on Emerging eLearning Technologies and Applications and it happened simultaneously with Competition „eLearning in Praxis” (September 10) that was held in the conference venue.
ICETA 2008 conference was organized in cooperation with The American Chamber of Commerce in Slovakia and under the patronage of Ján Mikolaj, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education (Slovakia), Ján Figeľ, Member of the European Commission responsible for Education, Training, Culture and Youth and Anton Čižmár, Rector of Technical University of Košice, Slovakia.
The participants of the conference were from all over the world: Canada, United States of America, United Kingdom, Russia, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Finland, Portugal, Spain, Egypt, Netherlands.
Valērijs Ņikitins was the only participant from Latvia and he presented Data Pro Group’s product – the adapted GENEXIS software in both events – International Conference ICETA 2008 and Competition „eLearning in Praxis” (in the category: Supporting Materials for On-line Learning). The conference paper ‘GenExis Education’ written by Valērijs Ņikitins was published in conference proceedings.
Additionally Valērijs Ņikitins had an opportunity to exchange information and experience in utilization of advanced ICT solutions in education as well as establish new business contacts with potential international partners. Data Pro Group is working further to facilitate the mutual interest in developing even better e-learning solutions and to establish productive partnership with interested parties in order to enhance the development and improvement of our products in the field of education.