Marketing students at higher education institutions across the United Kingdom started the new term as guinea pigs for the University of Central Lancashire's first commercial venture in multimedia.
The first two titles in a one-semester introduction to marketing for undergraduates, developed in consortium with London Guildhall and Manchester Metropolitan Universities, were issued to participating colleges before Christmas.
The package will take over from lecturers for the third and final round of tests, winding up with a student survey. Subject to fine-tuning, discs and support material will be on sale by the spring. Central Lancashire's own international business school will take part in the evaluation.
Project leader Roy Currie, based at the university's sophisticated new Learning Technologies Centre in Preston, said the work was at the forefront of the "new wave" of multimedia developments but technologists were wary of self-indulgence.
"It's not good enough to say new technology is glitzy and exciting, so let's use it. We've got to demonstrate that there's some sort of added educational value for it to be worthwhile. Student feedback is crucial," he said.