Information Technology Projects Course

Professor Arthur Goldberg
Computer Science Department
Spring 2006
Project Proposal


Company Description

As their web site states, this summarizes Wiley:

Wiley is a global publisher of print and electronic products, specializing in scientific, technical, and medical books and journals; professional and consumer books and subscription services; and textbooks and other educational materials for undergraduate and graduate students as well as lifelong learners. Wiley publishes in a variety of formats.

The company provides "must-have" content to targeted communities of interest. Wiley's deep reservoir of quality content, constantly replenished, offers a tremendous source of competitive advantage. Technology is making this content more accessible to customers worldwide and is adding value for them by delivering it in interactive and/or fully searchable formats. Approximately 25% of global revenue is currently Web-enabled; we expect to increase that figure to about 40% within the next three years.

With about 3,500 employees worldwide, Wiley has operations in the United States, Europe (England, Germany and Russia), Canada, Asia, and Australia. The Company has U.S. publishing, marketing, and distribution centers in New Jersey, California, Virginia, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. Wiley's worldwide headquarters are located in Hoboken, New Jersey, just across the river from Manhattan.

Proposal: Comprehensive user test of new learning functionality in WileyPLUS

WileyPLUS is Wiley's internally-developed teaching and learning platform. Each semester, Wiley releases a “major upgrade” to WileyPLUS which contains new functionality in many areas, but generally focuses on new methods for teaching/learning. This semester's enhancements include new tutorial tools for teaching in math, physics and accounting.

The focus of this project will be evaluation of the new functionality though planning, running and documenting a comprehensive user test of the upgrade's new functionality. The test will involve these steps:

At least two disciplines and courses – probably Physics and Accounting – will be tested. Wiley would like us to recruit 5 to 10 undergraduate students per subject.

The final project deliverable would be a testing report that details all findings qualitatively and quantitatively, and suggests alternatives and enhancements to the upgrade's new functionality via illustrations or prototypes where applicable.

To help encourage NYU students and instructors to participate in the test Wiley will pay participants; it is traditional for publishers to pay honoraria to reviewers.

If time allows, a possible extension that would produce a more statistically significant test would be to involve students at Stevens Institute (just up the street from Wiley) in addition to NYU.

I will help this project by incorporating ideas picked up at the Workshop on Teaching Software Testing which I plan to attend in early Feb.

Intern Address

111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ

They're only two blocks away from the Hoboken Path station. 111 River Street is between right on the riverfront between First and Second Streets.

Authorizing manager

Tom Speyer, Director, Enabling Technologies, Tspeyer <at>, 201-748-6583.

Project manager

Leo Beleman, Software Quality Assurance manager, lbegelma <at> Also, Tom Speyer, and Neil Casey ncasey <at>, a member of Tom's Enabling Technologies group, will participate regularly.

Meeting hours

Regular business hours (8 - 6, M-F), plus occasional meetings at NYU or evening meetings at Wiley

Resources that will be made available to students

Test courses will be set up for students. Instructor accounts will also be set up, which will enable the student team to set up class sections and accounts as needed for test subjects.