Call for Papers: Workshop on Recommender Systems for Technology Enhanced Learning (RecSysTEL)

May 31st, 2010 by Martin

The first Workshop on Recommender Systems for Technology Enhanced Learning (RecSysTEL 2010) will be held on September 29 or 30, 2010, in conjunction with the 4th ACM Conference on Recommender Systems (RecSys 2010) and 5th European Conference on Technology Enhanced Learning (EC-TEL 2010) in Barcelona.


Technology enhanced learning (TEL) aims to design, develop and test socio-technical innovations that will support and enhance learning practices of both individuals and organisations. It is an application domain that generally addresses all types of technology research & development aiming to support of teaching and learning activities. Information retrieval is a pivotal activity in TEL, and the deployment of recommender systems has attracted increased interest during the past years.
Recommendation methods, techniques and systems open an interesting new approach to facilitate and support learning and teaching. There are plenty a resource available on the Web, both in terms of digital learning content and people resources (e.g. other learners, experts, tutors) that can be used to facilitate teaching and learning tasks. The challenge is to develop, deploy and evaluate systems that provide learners and teachers with meaningful guidance in order to help identify suitable learning resources from a potentially overwhelming variety of choices.
The aim of the Workshop is to bring together researchers and practitioners that are working on topics related to the design, development and testing of recommender systems in educational settings as well as present the current status of research in this area and create cross-disciplinary liaisons between the RecSys and EC-TEL communities. Overall, it aims to outline the rich potential of TEL as an application area for recommender systems, as well as expose participants to the challenges of developing such systems in a TEL context.

Topics include but are not limited to:

* User tasks to be supported by recommender systems in TEL
* Focus of recommendation in TEL
* Requirements for the deployment of TEL recommender systems
* Publicly available data sets for TEL recommender systems
* Recommendation algorithms and systems for TEL
* Transfer of successful algorithms and systems from other application areas
* Evaluation criteria and methods for TEL recommender systems


20 June 2010: Submissions
16 July 2010: Notifications
1 August 2010: Camera-ready of accepted papers
29-30 September 2010: RecSysTEL Workshop in Barcelona


Published datasets in recommender systems, such as the MovieLens and EachMovie ones, are very often used in experimental testing of new recommendation algorithms. Very few datasets are publicly made available online for TEL applications. Thus, it is not possible yet for TEL recommender systems’ researchers to apply and benchmark their algorithms on existing, public datasets.
To this end, the dataTEL Theme Team of the European STELLAR Network of Excellence (
is sponsoring the dataTEL Challenge: a call for TEL datasets that invites research groups to submit existing datasets from TEL applications that can be used as input for TEL recommender systems (e.g. ratings, tags, bookmarks).

The winner of the dataTEL Challenge will receive a best TEL dataset award.

More about the dataTEL Challenge:


The Workshop accepts a variety of submission types:
* Full papers: 12 pages * Short papers: 6 pages
* System/service demos: 2 pages
* TEL Data sets: 2 pages and data set file (specs/format to be announced soon)

Papers should be original and not previously submitted to other venues. Submission will be available through the EasyChair submission system:
If you haven’t an EasyChair account yet, you’ll be asked to create it before you can access the RecSysTEL’10 page.


Workshop proceedings will be published in a seperate volume by a publisher that will be announced soon.
In addition, authors of best full papers will be invited to submit a revised version of their manuscripts for a Special Issue in a prestigious international journal such as the IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies.

* Jesus G. Boticario, aDeNu - Spanish National University for Distance Education (Spain)
* Peter Brusilovksy, University of Pittsburgh (USA)
* Erik Duval, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium)
* Denis Gillet, Swiss Federal Institute of Lausanne (Switzerland)
* Stefanie Lindstaedt, Know-Center Graz (Austria)
* Peter Scott, Open University (UK)
* Fridolin Wild, Open University (UK)
* Martin Wolpers, Fraunhofer FIT (Germany)
* Riina Vuorikari, European Schoolnet (Belgium)

* Liliana Ardissono, Universita di Torino (Italy)
* Katrin Borcea-Pfitzmann, Dresden University of Technology (Germany)
* Julien Broisin, IRIT Universite Paul Sabatier (France)
* Carlos Delgado Kloos, Carlos III University of Madrid (Spain)
* Stavros Demetriadis, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece)
* Jon Dron, Athabasca University (Canada)
* Rosta Farzan, Carnegie Mellon University (USA)
* Alexander Felfernig, Graz University of Technology (Austria)
* Rick D. Hangartner, Strands (USA)
* Eelco Herder, L3S (Germany)
* Tsukasa Hirashima, Hiroshima University (Japan)
* Ralf Klamma, RWTH Aachen University (Germany)
* Martin Memmel, DFKI GmbH (Germany)
* Pedro J. Muñoz-Merino, Carlos III University of Madrid (Spain)
* Brandon Muramatsu, MIT (USA)
* Wolfgang Nejdl - L3S & Leibniz Universität Hannover (Germany)
* Xavier Ochoa, Escuela Superior Politecnica del Litoral (Ecuador)
* Mimi Recker, Utah State University (USA)
* Christoph Rensing, TU Darmstadt (Germany)
* Hans-Christian Schmitz, Fraunhofer FIT (Germany)
* Miguel-Angel Sicilia, University of Alcala (Spain)
* Sergey Sosnovsky,DFKI GmbH (Germany)

* Nikos Manouselis, Greek Research & Technology Network (Greece)
* Hendrik Drachsler, Open Universiteit Nederlands (The Netherlands)
* Katrien Verbert, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium)
* Olga C. Santos, aDeNu - Spanish National University for Distance Education (Spain)

Call for Papers: 2nd Workshop on Information Credibility on the Web

June 27th, 2008 by Martin

The aim of the 2nd Workshop on Information Credibility on the Web (WICOW 2008) is to provide a forum for discussion about issues related to information credibility and its evaluation.

It will be held on October 30, 2008, in Napa Valley, California in conjunction with the 17th ACM CIKM.

You can find more information here.

Call for Papers: Social Information Retrieval for Technology-Enhanced Learning

May 8th, 2008 by Martin

I have the pleasure to be member of the program committee of the 2nd workshop 2nd on Social Information Retrieval for Technology-Enhanced Learning (SIRTEL).

Topics of interests are (amongst others) Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) and Social Information Retrieval (SIR) techniques such as:

  • Recommender systems
  • Social collaborative searching, browsing and sharing of queries
  • Social network analysis
  • Game-theoretic approaches to select learning materials and learning partners in the long tail
  • Social bookmarking and tagging, folksonomies
  • Annotations, ratings and evaluations

You can contribute research papers, system demos, hands-on proposals and even “Pecha Kucha” talks. Sounds like some serious fun!

You can find more information about the workshop here!

educamp ilmenau

April 19th, 2008 by Martin

I’m currently attending the educamp in Ilmenau. A lot of interesting sessions, especially yovisto really impressed me. If offers “academic video search” and already links to approximately 3000 videos, a lot of them from Germany, but also content from, e.g., MIT Lectures. What is really cool is the automatic indexing of videos using ocr, and the possibility to tag a certain point in time and to post these tags in other social bookmarking systems. Great work!

educamp sessions
educamp sessions, source:

In the moment, I’m listening to a nice presentation about the digital profil of a fake identity (Rainer Buhl-Schied - good one). And of course I’ll attend the session with Stephan Downes, I hope they will set up a good connection…

re:publica 08

April 4th, 2008 by Martin

I’m currently in Berlin attending the re:publica. The current session is quite boring, so I used the time to upload the slides of the presentation I gave yesterday. It’s called “Sagt wer? Metadaten im Web”. Slides are in German, but not that much text anyway.

The presentation is about why metadata is important, how metadata can be generated, and about why we should embrace any kind of information that is available. At least when we have the choice what to use in which way. And of course I also talked about ALOE , also introducing our tag recommendation approach. More on this topic when I’m back from Berlin, and when the FP7 madness is over.

Call for Papers: Knowledge Sharing using Social Media

March 12th, 2008 by Martin

The one-day special track on Knowledge Sharing using Social Media takes place during TRIPLE-I ‘08 in Graz, Austria (3 – 5 September 2007) as one programme item of I-KNOW ‘08. It provides an interdisciplinary forum for international scientists and practitioners to discuss various aspects of Knowledge Sharing using Social Media (KSS).

You can find more information here!


March 6th, 2008 by Martin

ALOE is already in Hannover at CeBIT 2008 for three days now, and it looks as if several new and interesting cooperations are possible. Let’s see what happens, I’m curious. CeBIT will last until Sunday evening, you can find ALOE at the DFKI booth (B37) in hall 9!

And for all the German speaking readers: On Friday, I will give a future talk (also in hall 9) about the ideas behind ALOE. It’s called: “Schöne neue Metadatenwelt - Experten, Computer und User Generated Content”.

Looking forward to meeting you in Hannover!

Call for Workshops (EC-TEL 2008)

February 21st, 2008 by Martin

I attended both EC-TEL 2006 (in Crete) and EC-TEL 2007 (also in Crete), and I enjoyed them a lot (postings can be found here). EC-TEL 2008 will take place in the sunny City of Maastricht…so no sunburn risk this time. But anyway: We’re only in it for the science, aren’t we? ;-) And I’m sure that there will be great attendees again, so I encourage you to submit a proposal for a workshop!

** 2. Call for Workshops **
EC-TEL 2008

Third European Conference on Technology Enhanced Learning

Maastricht, The Netherlands
September 17-19 2008

Supported by the European Association of Technology Enhanced Learning (EA-TEL)


The European Conference Series on Technology Enhanced Learning (EC-TEL) provides a unique opportunity and forum for researchers of all respective disciplines to come together and discuss recent achievements and future challenges in TEL. With the previous two highly successful EC-TEL in 2006 and 2007 and about 200 participants each, this years’ EC-TEL 2008 invites all researchers across the different fields of TEL (education, psychology, computer science, economics …) to contribute to the scientific landscape of technology enhanced learning.

In the context of EC-TEL 2008, we invite workshop proposals on challenging topics that discuss specific issues relating to TEL. The workshops of EC-TEL 2008 are expected to look onward beyond recent achievements to discuss specific topics, emerging research issues, new trends and endeavors in TEL. The workshops should provide an excellent forum for discussion, so that novel work not yet finalized can be presented in a friendly and supportive environment.

EC-TEL 2008 offers the usual serviced workshops, where registration, catering, room allocation and audio/visual will be organized by the conference organizers. The serviced workshops will take place on Wednesday before the conference. The workshops will be hosted at the conference venue Workshop proposals can have any duration from half-day to one day.

** Submission **

Workshop proposals should not exceed 4 pages (single spaced, 12 point Times New Roman style font). They should briefly outline the topic of the workshop and how it is relevant to TEL. The proposals should include a short statement describing the background of each of the organizers, clearly illustrating their expertise in this topic. Workshop proposers should outline the names and topics of expected contributors/facilitators, and indicate why EC-TEL conference attendees would participate in the workshop. Only electronic submissions will be accepted. Workshop participants will need to register for the EC-TEL conference.

Using a peer-review system, the successful workshops will be selected among all submitted proposals. The peer-review group consists of members of the conference program committee und the auspice of the conference chairs.

Enquiries and submissions should be emailed to the EC-TEL workshop chair:

** Publication **

The workshop proceedings will be published online as part of the CEUR Workshop proceedings series. is a recognized ISSN publication series, ISSN 1613-0073.

Furthermore, the two best papers of each workshop will be published in a special issue of the International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning (IJTEL -

** Important dates **

• Workshop Proposal Submission Deadline: April 1, 2008
• Notification of Workshop Acceptance: May 7, 2008
• Camera Ready Proceedings of Workshops: August 31, 2008
• Workshops: September 17, 2008

The Future of Metadata

February 8th, 2008 by Martin

Back from the Workshop “Metadata 2.0″ in Leuven. Thanks to the organizers and participants for this inspiring event! You find the presented material on the Wiki.

20080207 leuven 005
Yes, of course I had frites in Belgium!

What’s the outcome for me? Well, there’s definitely something going on out there. And most of the people are aware of that. Expert generated metadata - whatever quality they create, and even if it was only considering “objective” metadata - is not a solution for the future. What worked (somehow) for libraries doesn’t work in the same way for digital resources, especially on the Web. The Web is no library. We need new approaches when it’s about to provide information about resources.

The Web is not centralized. And neither should the metadata describing resources on the Web be. I think that Resource profiles as described by Stephen Downes in 2004 are the future of metadata! There is a lot of very valuable information about resources in many places. Distributed, created in different ways, in different formats. This can of course also be expert metadata, but also metadata generated by users or user interactions, usage metadata, automatically generated metadata etc. Yes, it can also be crap. But we are free to choose what we need and what we like. It’s up to us which people and which services we trust! When we look at all the different metadata this way, we have a much better chance to get valid information about what a resource is really about, about how it is used in the community, and about subjective information such as “quality” or “difficulty”.

Of course we can only use metadata about resources when we know that it exists. Maybe someday Google or someone else will provide means as the recently launched Social Graph API to harvest metadata. When we can’t harvest the information ourselves, we need hubs where such information is collected. And because we wanted to have such a hub that also allows to integrate new information, we developed ALOE. Using the Web Interface or the Service API, everybody can contribute information like “x is metadata about y”. Users can either upload the metadata and the resource, or they can just referer to an existing URL. ALOE is a repository and a referatory. Because a simple hub would be quite dead and anonymous, and because we also wanted to encourage users to participate, we developed ALOE as a “social hub”, i.e., it comes with a nice Web interface, you can tag, comment, rate, communicate, join groups…all the social media stuff.

It will be very exciting to see what will happen in the future. And I hope some of the exciting things will happen in ALOE! And this reminds me that I almost forgot that we also have an ALOE Blog, and that I should blog about what we’re currently working on…stay tuned!

“Metadata 2.0″

February 5th, 2008 by Martin

Thanks to Erik Duval and Martin Wolpers, I have the pleasure to give a talk at the Workshop “Metadata 2.0″ in Leuven on February 7th.

The title of my presentation will be ALOE - Combining User Generated Content and Traditional Metadata. I will talk about the ideas that led to the development of ALOE, and about the (potential) benefits of combining different kinds of metadata.

Update: The slides are available at slideshare now