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PedaGlue Progress Paper

This is a very early draft of a paper. The author line is open.


Problem: This paper focuses on using the community to provide purpose, mature feedback, and using collaboration as tools in constructing knowledge. ... , Approach:..., Findings:..., and Conclusions:... (100 words). Paper max. 5,000 words.

What is PedaGlue?[edit]

A basic review of constructivism in the fields of learning theory appears in Wikipedia (2007). At ITHET (2004) Kennedy presented his constructivism approach named 'PedaGlue'. He taught a class how to provide pedagogical links themselves, a technique he called the Teaching of PedaGlue. Systematically and intentionally he teaches post-graduate students how to do this didactisizing (pedagogical process) themselves, and thereby rapidly develop new, modern, dynamic instructional reference material. "To ensure that life-long learning takes place, we need to empower the students to make the links themselves, thereby cancelling their dependence on their sources. Otherwise, we are sentencing them to be eternal consumers of knowledge. To achieve empowerment, we need to teach the glue to students and guarantee the next generation of lecturers and researchers. More immediately, we need to help our students to become life-long learners through teaching them how to provide their own pedagogical links, which we call Teaching PedaGlue." (Kennedy 2004)

"The didacticizing processes include:

  • giving the prerequisites,
  • giving a summary of what is to come,
  • giving the background,
  • giving the viewpoints,
  • giving the limitations,
  • giving the content,
  • giving examples which are relevant,
  • giving the links to reference material,
  • giving exercises to hammer home the material and enable the students to internalise it,
  • giving links to supplementary material to fully engage the minds of bright students,
  • assessing the students to quantify the degree of assimilation of the material. " (Kennedy, 2006)

The value of higher education resides in generic skills and attitudes rather than specific knowledge acquired — these include skills such as how to access, process, create, share and apply specific knowledge, and internalize attitudes such as critical awareness and intellectual curiosity (Marshall 1996).

How can post-graduates get international peer review and learn to work together?[edit]

There have been three subsequent years of teaching the course where students have added to the scholarly body of knowledge via the class activities. These have not been reported upon before and are now reported here.


This paper reports on how the students have been exposed to critical peer review; how this has been motivating (and revealing), and how working together was forced upon the students. The paper reports on the final two phases of the instructional development cycle: 10. Make a Reference work. 11. Manage and maintain it. In these years, the students have contributed to the popular site Wikipedia (Kennedy et al., 2005), or the textbook site IEEE Connexions ( They learnt to collaborate with each other (and a critical world) in producing an on-line encyclopaedic entry / textbook on a set topic.

The teaching technique has been used in the Teletraffic Engineering course taught face-to-face at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. The broad aims of the course are to teach the student:

  • the basic probability theory underlying teletraffic.
  • how to design and specify circuit quantities for voice, based on traffic measurements and an acceptable Grade of Service.
  • how to predict, quantify, evaluate and reduce congestion in voice networks.

During these three years the post-graduate teletraffic engineering course further used a stronger constructivist approach. Group work and Problem Based Learning is expected. The lecturer's constructivist approach is documented in his paper on Pedaglue. (Although it might seem that this gives the lecturer a lighter load, this is in fact not the case.)

Two changes to search engines have occurred after publication of the paper and need to be documented. Although still advertised, link: no longer works on AltaVista. Secondly, Google has introduced, which almost avoids the need to type "Abstract" etc. in the search string. Nevertheless, this is still a good trick for hunting down papers that are indexed by Google, but not Scholar.

How can students get immediate international peer review?[edit]

After lecturing "the dry textbook", the 2005 course was then also run on a constructivist basis. The eight students in the class had to put entries onto Wikipedia under the heading "Teletraffic Engineering" (Wikipedia 2007).

How can students learn to work together?[edit]

After lecturing "the dry textbook", the 2006 course was then also run on a constructivist basis. The eight students in the class had to put together The Teletraffic Textbook, in IEEE Connexions sponsored initially at Rice University ( This taught them how to work co-operatively with the scholars that had gone before them and with their colleagues in the class, which constituted the only peer review prior to marking.

To get them thinking along the right lines, students were asked what makes the difference between an encyclopedia and a textbook. They soon realized that the textbook has examples and exercises, which the encyclopedia lacks. They were then directed to the encyclopedic information about teletraffic previously placed on the Web by the class of 2005, and requested to investigate other sources.

Students were then given three assignments of increasing difficulty, which they had to submit to IEEE Connexions and also to submit to the lecturer by e-mail as an HTML attachment:

1. The first assignment for 15 marks was to generate a first pass writing of Chapter 1, the chapter which summarizes the prerequisite knowledge that incoming students (like them) are expected (rightly or wrongly) to have absorbed, before being let loose on the true teletraffic material. This entailed a certain degree of reflection, and introspection and critical thinking.

2. The second assignment for 45 marks was for each student to write half of chapters 3-5 of The Teletraffic Textbook (TTT). This required referencing multiple sources and merging the findings intelligently. The students added value by adding in Examples and Exercises (with linked answers).

3. The third assignment for 40 marks was to rewrite part of the Chapter 1 contribution that a different student had previously written in assignment 1. This also taught them to be critical thinkers.

The students were briefed beforehand on the conventions to be used e.g., every page was to be headed with a title question that was answered in the module. See appendix 1. In-house formatting conventions were also conveyed to the students. The students themselves had to work out how IEEE connexions worked. No instruction was given here as there was no time was available for this in the course.

Did learning occur?[edit]

Learning did occur. The average mark for assignment 1 was 66% and assignment 3 was 73%. As the material being examined was the same, the positive difference indicates that Chapter One was improved through subsequent editing by other students.

The resulting Teletraffic Textbook (TTT) is divided into 5 'courses' (really chapters), each composed of learning objects called 'modules' (really web pages).

Students admitted to doing much more than twice the nominal number of hours required for the course. The 60 modules they created are listed in Appendix 1. in alphabetical order of all the chapters and modules (really files) that they created.

Future work[edit]

In 2007, assignments were to:

1. read and improve a chapter in The Teletraffic Textbook (TTT)

2. add a chapter to TTT.

3. edit and improve someone else's recently added chapter in TTT.

Chapters for TTT at the end of 2006 deal with the topics, listed here in Appendix 2 in alphabetical order, but not in logical order of presentation. The 18 bold topics are missing. The students' task for a subsequent year is to rectify this.

In the future, the students could be asked to contribute to Wikibooks.



Marshall, S., Inaugural Professorial Lecture delivered on May 24, 1996 at Gippsland Campus, Monash University.

Kennedy, I.G., Pedaglue Teaching for Life-long Learners: Rapid Development by Post-Graduates of a PG Course with Modern Content. ICALT2004 - 4th International Conference on Advanced Learning Technologies. August 30 - September 1, 2004. Joensuu, Finland. 2nd International Workshop on Technology for Education in Developing Countries. pp. 1013-1017 Available on-line The presentation slides are at

Kennedy, I.G., Using revolution, evolution, randomness and dead-ends in Educational Design. ITHET 2006.

Kennedy, I.G., & teletraffic students of 2005

Kennedy, I.G., & teletraffic students of 2006. On-line Creative Commons course: The Teletraffic Textbook. In IEEE Connexions, ( The Teletraffic Textbook (TTT) is divided into 5 'courses' (really chapters).

Appendix 1[edit]

......... Title ID ... Size ... Modified ... State

  1. A term closely linked to quality of service is grade of service. Why do we need to monitor grade of service? 1.7 kB 2006-02-15 10:24 AM Created
  2. Answer to channel holding 1.6 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
  3. Answer to long-range dependency m13370 2006-02-14 04:23 PM Published
  4. Answer to spectral efficiency 1.6 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
  5. AnswerChi-square 5.9 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Created
  6. AnswerChi-squareDistribution 3.8 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Created
  7. AnswerContingencyTest 1.6 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Created
  8. Course Chapter 1 - The Teletraffic textbook 2006-02-17 05:48 AM Created; Course Chapters 1-5 of The Teletraffic Textbook 2006-03-06 03:59 AM Created
  9. Chi-square contingency test m13488 7.9 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Checked Out
 10. Give possible suggestions of any other scenarios that can be modelled by the heavy-tailed distribution? 1.6 kB 2006-02-15 10:34 AM Created
 11. How can Long-Tail traffic be controlled? m13403 2006-02-15 08:57 AM Published
 12. How can Long-Tail traffic be modelled? m13399 2006-02-15 09:18 AM Published
 13. How does Long-Tail traffic affect Network performance? m13400 2006-02-15 08:42 AM Published
 14. How is Long-Tail traffic provisioned? m13397 2006-02-15 09:05 AM Published
 15. In a single throw of a die, what is the probability of getting a number greater than four? m13485 2006-03-03 01:27 PM Published
 16. New technologies like CTI don't seem to have an edge over the primary telephony. Why is that so? 2.0 kB 2006-02-15 10:11 AM Created
 17. Under what conditions can long-range dependence be exploited for traffic control? 1.6 kB 2006-02-15 10:42 AM Created
 18. What are some of the unwanted effects of jitter? 1.7 kB 2006-02-15 10:19 AM Created
 19. What causes Long-Tail traffic? m13401 2006-02-15 08:52 AM Published
 20. What conditions make Statistical Independence? m13486 2006-03-03 01:24 PM Published
 21. What is Brownian Motion? 1.7 kB 2006-02-15 08:14 AM Created
 22. What is Congestion? 1.9 kB 2006-02-15 07:48 AM Created
 23. What is GSM? 2.4 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 24. What is Jitter? 2.8 kB 2006-02-15 08:18 AM Created
 25. What is Multimedia? 2.1 kB 2006-02-15 07:53 AM Created
 26. What is Open Loop? 1.8 kB 2006-02-15 08:31 AM Created
 27. What is Quality of Service? 2.6 kB 2006-02-15 08:34 AM Created
 28. What is Statistical Independence? m13473 3.1 kB 2006-03-03 12:24 PM Checked Out
 29. What is Telephony? 2.5 kB 2006-02-15 08:03 AM Created
 30. What is a Sample Space? m13483 2006-03-03 01:04 PM Published
 31. What is a Service Level Agreement? 2.0 kB 2006-02-15 08:07 AM Created
 32. What is a Stateless Server? 2.3 kB 2006-02-15 07:40 AM Created
 33. What is a confidence limit? 1.3 kB 2006-03-05 07:49 PM Created
 34. What is a protocol? 2.7 kB 2006-02-15 07:17 AM Created
 35. What is a random variable? m13484 2006-03-03 01:11 PM Published
 36. What is a simulation? m13492 3.7 kB 2006-03-05 08:25 PM Checked Out
 37. What is an algorithm? 1.4 kB 2006-03-05 07:20 PM Created
 38. What is an event? m13476 2006-03-03 01:16 PM Published
 39. What is an expected frequency? m13475 2006-03-03 12:07 PM Published
 40. What is channel holding time? 3.1 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 41. What is handover? 2.8 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 42. What is long-range dependency? m13369 2006-02-14 04:19 PM Published
 43. What is mobile quality of service? 2.5 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 44. What is nominal data? 2.8 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Created
 45. What is non-Poisson traffic? 12.9 kB 2006-02-14 01:27 AM Created
 46. What is non-parametric statistics? 2.2 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Created
 47. What is provisioning? 3.1 kB 2006-02-15 07:58 AM Created
 48. What is random number generation? m13490 3.2 kB 2006-03-05 07:20 PM Checked Out
 49. What is spectral efficiency and sectorization? 3.6 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 50. What is the chi-square distribution? 30.8 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Created
 51. What is the chi-square statistic? m13487 14.4 kB 2006-03-05 05:18 PM Checked Out
 52. What is the confidence interval for the conservative party? 1.5 kB 2006-03-05 07:38 PM Created
 53. What is the confidence interval of an estimate? m13491 3.8 kB 2006-03-05 07:49 PM Checked Out
 54. What is the confidence interval of an estimate? m13491 3.8 kB 2006-03-05 08:00 PM Checked Out
 55. What is the probability of an even throw on a die? m13474 2006-03-03 12:41 PM Published
 56. What is traffic capacity versus coverage? 2.3 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 57. What is traffic load and cell size? 3.2 kB 2006-02-14 04:43 PM Created
 58. Which of the two methods of generating random numbers is most likely to produce the true random numbers? 2.2 kB 2006-03-05 07:20 PM Created
 59. Why do you think we should bother ourselves with modelling long-tail traffic? 1.7 kB 2006-02-15 09:46 AM Created
 60. Will all the arrivals be served? 2.2 kB 2006-03-05 08:11 PM Created

Appendix 2[edit]

  1. What is Blocking?
  2. What are the types of Congestions?
  3. What is Congestion control?
  4. What is the Engset calculation?
  5. What is Flow control?
  6. What are Gradings?
  7. What is the High loss calculation?
  8. How does Internet telephony traffic differ?
  9. What is the Limited Availability Calculation?
 10. What is Long-tailed traffic? (6 modules=1course)
 11. What is mobile quality of service? (1 module)
 12. What is Multi-media traffic? (1 module)
 13. What is Quality of Service? (1 module)
 14. What is Queueing?
 15. What is Routing?
 16. What is Tariffing?
 17. What is Trade in Services?
 18. How do we Manage Teletraffic data?
 19. How is Telephony Traffic Forecast?
 20. How is Telephony Traffic Modelled?
 21. How is Telephony Traffic Simulated?
 22. What is Trunking? 


Ian G. Kennedy (MSAIEE) Born Johannesburg 1945-03-29. This author has attained the following degrees at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa: PhD, 1992; MSc(Eng), 1985; BSc(Eng), 1967. He is registered as a Professional Engineer with the Engineering Council of S. Africa. He was Development Engineer at Motorola SA in 1967; Science and Maths teacher at St Andrews School, Bloemfontein in 1968 and 1969; Research Officer at NBRI, CSIR Pretoria in 1969 and 1970. Also in Pretoria, on 1971-02-01, he joined the Department of Posts and Telecommunications, now Telkom SA, where he became a High Level Specialist (Manager). During 1999 he was a Visiting Professor to the University of Cape Town, Department of Electrical Engineering (also 1998); Visiting Professor to the University of Pretoria, Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. In June 1999, he returned to his alma mater, the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa, where he is currently a lecturer. He is author of the CD-ROM book "How to do Research" Pretoria: Published by the author. ISBN 0-620-27218-X. © 2006. Dr. Kennedy is a Member of The English Academy of Southern Africa.

--Ian Kennedy 10:52, 31 January 2007 (UTC)