who is MATTER?

MATTER was set up as a non-profit consortium of UK materials science departments in 1993 to develop and help integrate computer-based learning (CBL) materials into mainstream teaching.

Led by the University of Liverpool, MATTER was originally one of over 70 different projects funded by the Teaching and Learning Technology Programme (TLTP).  This phase of the project resulted in the publication in 1996 of the award-winning Materials Science on CD-ROM, with a second version being released in 1998.  This has now become the leading software resource of its type, and is in use in universities throughout the world. In 1997, Materials Science on CD-ROM was unanimously voted by public jury as winner of the Educational Video/ CD-ROM/CDi competition at EUROMAT '97, held in Maastricht, Netherlands.

More recently, our activities have expanded to include the development of science-based software resources for schools, industry and other science disciplines in universities.  In keeping with the explosive growth of the internet in the past few years, all our software is now developed for web-delivery.  For example, in 1999, we worked in partnership with Corus (formerly British Steel) and the University of Birmingham to produce SteelMATTER - a set of on-line resources for ferrous metallurgy.

In 2001 we started a new project, aluMATTER, with the European Aluminium Association to develop interactive e-Learning materials for aluminium science and technology. In 2003, funding was secured from the European Leonardo da Vinci programme for a new 3-year aluMATTER project.

We have also developed a web interface for aluSelect, a computer-based reference database containing technical information on the most widely used aluminium alloys

In 2001, we also started a pilot project with the International Iron and Steel Institute (IISI) to create similar resources for steel science and technology. After a very positive evaluation of this pilot project, IISI has set up steeluniversity.org, which aims at providing a comprehensive package of highly interactive e-learning resources on steel technologies, covering all aspects of the steelmaking processes through to products, their applications and recycling. 20 new modules will be developed between 2004 and 2008.

In 2003, Peter Goodhew (Project Director) and Andrew Green (Project Manager) were presented with the Médaille Bastien-Guillet at the Journées d'Automne of the Société Française de Métallurgie et de Matériaux (SF2M). This was awarded recognition of MATTER's work in spreading knowledge in the field of metallurgy and materials science.

In 2004, steeluniversity.org was selected as a winner at the finals of the prestigious European Academic Software Awards (EASA), held in Switzerland.


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