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MERLOT II


    

Peer Review


Down Syndrome on the Internet

 

Ratings

Overall Rating:

3 stars
Content Quality: 3 stars
Effectiveness: 3 stars
Ease of Use: 3 stars
Reviewed: Jun 04, 2001 by Teacher Education
Overview: This site directs those interested in more information about Down Syndrome to U.S. organizations, additional websites, international websites, internet magazines, medical resources, and other resources for parents.
Learning Goals: This site is simply one page with six different categories of related URLs dealing with Down Syndrome. Students will read, research, and investigate internet information and references on Down Syndrome.
Target Student Population: This site is for the general public, but can easily be applied to those learning about special education and, specifically, Down Syndrome.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: No prerequisite content information is necessary. The viewer must be able to navigate a list of URLs.
Type of Material: Collection.
Technical Requirements: This site is one HTML page with a list of URLs on Down Syndrome. No additional plug-ins or applications are needed to view the site.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 3 stars
Strengths: The categories of content listing presented on this site include: U.S. National Organizations, Comprehensive Websites, International Websites, Internet Magazines, Medical Resources, and Other Resources for Parents. Since the selected links go to a range of URLs from around the world, there is a range of quality of content represented in the links. The organization contacts and most of the comprehensive websites present information that is relevant and useful to a student learning about Down Syndrome. Some content is presented in languages other than English. The content found in the related URLs ranges from basic - with no need for prerequisite information - to more in depth information where background understanding would be helpful. The six categories with choices are helpful in locating the specific interest or focus of the user.
Concerns: : No contact information is supplied. Also, there is no indication of how recently the site has been updated. The actual site is sparse.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 3 stars
Strengths: The potential effectiveness of this site lies in the collected presentation of related and relevant URLs for Down Syndrome. If this site is used in a teacher education situation for the instruction of special education and disability concepts and models, then it provides opportunities for individual or group research. Charts, reports, and presentations could be developed for any one of the many topics addressed here. Connections from around the world, to article reviews, to debates on risk and recurrence are all possible with the information from the links. The varied links to information on Down Syndrome is the strength of this site.
Concerns: : Not knowing who compiled this site or why leaves some unanswered questions for these reviewers.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 3 stars
Strengths: None. Some of the URLs listed on the site appear to include some interesting information.
Concerns: There is no contact information for the webmaster. Some of the URLs which go beyond the one page site have some HTML problems with text and images, but since the main site is only the list of URLs, they cannot be corrected.