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OAK - Online Access to Knowledge

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About OAK

OAK, Powered by Blackboard.

The OAK (Online Access to Knowledge) environment refers to a set of tools that enhance the students' academic experience, including learning management systems and other technology-related tools that mediate learning. A memorandum from the Provost, dated April 7, 2003, a task force was formed to begin the process of shaping Vanderbilt's electronic academy environment. The demise of Prometheus was the catalyst for this memorandum, and the reason the search for a new learning management system (LMS) quickly ensued, with the adoption of Blackboard as the first component of OAK.

The TMA (Technology-Mediated Academy) provides a framework for thinking about how technology can enhance students' learning experience at Vanderbilt. The framework is divided into three groups: Student Services, Course Management, and Learning Technologies. These three groups, when joined together by enterprise-level software, will allow a student to have virtual access to all of his/her academic information.

OAK encompasses the Course Management and Learning Technologies groups. These two areas are specific to technology-mediated learning. In time, additional components will be added to OAK, each chosen by the guiding framework of the TMA. Groups of faculty across the university have been using different technologies in their classrooms to enhance learning for several semesters. OAK is a way to begin talking about how these different technologies can come together to enhance the students' academic experience.

The Jean and Alexander Heard Library is now the steward of OAK.