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AbstractWe have set up PIRATE, a remotely operable 35 cm astronomical telescope in a robotic dome at the Observatori Astronomic de Mallorca, to pilot the realtime use of a telescope by distance-leaning students from their home. Remote access software, webpages and course materials for third level Open University students were developed. The experience from the first cohort of students of a 10 week-long project based on PIRATE demonstrates the success of the PIRATE concept for teaching practical science at a distance, and highlights the benefits distance learning students draw from a stimulating framework that facilitates group working.
Kolb, Ulrich <http://oro.open.ac.uk/view/person/uck2.html>; Lucas, Robert <http://oro.open.ac.uk/view/person/rjl335.html>; Burwitz, Vadim; Holmes, Stefan <http://oro.open.ac.uk/view/person/sh22397.html>; Haswell, Carole <http://oro.open.ac.uk/view/person/cah98.html>; Rodgriguez, Juan; Rolfe, Samantha <http://oro.open.ac.uk/view/person/smr467.html>; Rostron, John and Barker, John (2010). PIRATE - the piCETL Astronomical Telescope Explorer. In: Norton, Andrew ed. Electronic Resources for Teaching and Learning. Milton Keynes: The Open University, pp. 58–64.