A conceptual framework for the development of intelligent, learning style- and computer-based educational software for topics from operations research

Du Plessis, S. A. (Sameul Altenstadt) (1999-11)

Thesis (Ph.D)--University of Stellenbosch, 1999

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to construct a conceptual framework for the development of intelligent, learning style- and computer-based educational software and to apply it to linear programming (LP). A secondary goal was to extend the framework to also include other topics from Operations Research. The system that resulted from this study was named GEORGE, in honor of the inventor of the simplex method George Dantzig. GEORGE utilizes fuzzy interpretations of learning style inventories and models of teaching and learning to determine a student's learning and teaching style preferences. An individualized tutoring strategy is then computed and used to present the course material to the student. A whole range of modes of presentation can be included in such a strategy, from drill-and-practice exercises, demonstrations and step-by-step tutorials to flow- and step charts and point-and-query interfaces. GEORGE keeps a practical and effective student model and controls the tutoring with a domain- and motivational based planner. The models of teaching and learning, mentioned above, are based on the results of fuzzy interpretations of Kolb's learning style inventory (experimental learning), a Myers Briggs Type Indicator Test (personality), La Haye's temperament test, a visualizer-verbalizer questionnaire, a study preference guide (sequential/global preferences), the model of teaching and learning of Felder and Silverman (for engineering education), Neethling's Brain Profile Test, a model of teaching and learning that is based on left and right brain preferences, and Sternberg's model of thinking styles. GEORGE consists of six modules, namely a problem solving or domain expert module, a generic questioning module, a presentation module, an "artificial psychologist" module, a student model module and a tutorial module. The generic questioning module is used to generate tutoring and testing material for GEORGE and the "artificial psychologist" module is used primarily to supply students with individualized psychological help, from study techniques and emotional matters to motivation and goal setting. The remaining four modules correspond more or less with the four modules of a traditional intelligent tutoring system. A number of artificial intelligence techniques i.e. natural language understanding, fuzzy expert and fuzzy decision making systems, induction and neural networks, are used in the implementation of different components of GEORGE. Applications of De Bono's thinking skills also play an important role in a number of components (teaching students how to think), the presentation of various personal development or self improvement techniques are very prominent (in the "artificial psychologist" module), and the accommodation of differences among users (especially learning style preferences) receives high priority. The implementation of the various components of GEORGE resulted in a number of useable computer-based learning modules. These demonstration programs illustrate the various concepts within the suggested general framework. The system was developed in Turbo Pascal and integrated within the "Windows"-environment with the help of the authoring system, EasyTutor. GEORGE will eventually be extended to become not only a computer-based tutor of LP topics, but also a Resourceful Environment for the Clever Tutoring of other Operations Research techniques (RECTOR). Guidelines regarding the transformation of GEORGE into RECTOR are provided. RECTOR, and parts thereof, should be used in a very similar way as in GEORGE, to supply computer support of lectures, to provide computer-assisted learning, to conduct computer-based learning, to create a computer environment for calculations and as a source of self-paced and open access material.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die primere doelwit van hierdie studie was om 'n konseptuele raamwerk daar te stel vir die ontwikkeling van intelligente, leerstyl gebaseerde en rekenaargesteunde onderrigmateriaal en om dit dan toe te pas op lineere programmering. As sekondere doelwit is gepoog om aan te toon hoe hierdie raamwerk uitgebrei kan word om ook ander onderwerpe uit Operasionele Navorsing in te sluit. Die resulterende stelsel is GEORGE gedoop om hulde te bring aan die ontwerper van die sirnpleksmetode George Dantzig. GEORGE gebruik fuzzy interpretasies van leerstylinventarisse en modelle van onderrig en leer om 'n student se leerstyl en onderrig voorkeure te bepaal. 'n Ge!ndividualiseerde tutoriaal strategie word dan bereken en gebruik om die onderrigmateriaal aan die student aan te bied. 'n Verskeidenheid van aanbiedingselemente kan ingesluit word in so 'n strategie, van dril-en-inoefen programme, demonstrasies en stap-vir-stap tutoriale tot vloeikaarte en wys-en-vra koppelvlakke. GEORGE onderhou 'n praktiese en effektiewe studente model en beheer die onderrig met behulp van 'n vakgebied- en motiveringsgebaseerde beplanner (die sogenaamde "domain- and motivational based planner"). Bogenoemde modelle van onderrig en leer is gebaseer op fuzzy interpretasies van Kolb se leerstylinventaris ( ervaringsleer), 'n "Myers Briggs Type Indicator" toets (persoonlikheid), Tim La Haye se temperament toets, 'n sogenaamde "visualizer-verbalizer questionnaire", 'n inventaris wat voorkeure vir sekwensiele of globale aanbiedingswyses bepaal, Felder en Silverman se model van onderrig en leer vir ingenieursonderrig, Neethling se breinprofiel toets, 'n model van onderrig en leer wat gebaseer is op linker- en regterbreinvoorkeure en Sternberg se model van denkstyle. GEORGE bestaan uit 6 modules, te wete 'n probleemoplossings- of vakdeskundige module, 'n scenario genereringsmodule, 'n aanbiedingsmodule, 'n skynsielkundige module, 'n studente model module en 'n tutoriaal module. Die scenario genereringsmodule word gebruik om onderrig- en toets materiaal vir GEORGE te genereer, terwyl die skynsielkundige module primer ingespan word om studente van ge!ndividualiseerde sielkundige hulp te voorsien. Laasgenoemde sluit in advies in verband met studie gewoontes, emosies, motivering en doelwitstelling. Die oorblywende vier modules kom in 'n groot mate ooreen met die vier modules van 'n klassieke intelligente tutorstelsel. 'n Aantal skynintelligensie tegnieke, te wete natuurlike taalverwerking, fuzzy deskundige- en besluitnemingsteunstelsels, induksie en neurale netwerke, word gebruik in die implementering van die verskillende komponente van GEORGE. De Bono se denkvaardigheidsoefeninge speel ook 'n belangrike rol in sommige komponente (leer studente hoe om te dink), terwyl die aanbieding van verskillende persoonlikheidsontwikkelingstegnieke baie prominent in die skynsielkundige module voorkom. Die akkommodering van verskille tussen gebruikers (veralleerstyl verskille) geniet die hoogste prioriteit binne die stelsel. Die implementering van die verskillende komponente van GEORGE het 'n aantal baie bruikbare rekenaargesteunde leermodules tot gevolg gehad. Hierdie demonstrasie programme illustreer die verskillende konsepte van die voorgestelde konseptuele raamwerk. Die stelsel is in Turbo Pascal en met behulp van 'n "Windows" gebaseerde outeurstelsel, EasyTutor, ontwikkel. Riglyne is ook daargestel vir die omskakeling van GEORGE na RECTOR ("a Resourceful Environment for the Clever Tutoring of other Operations Research techniques"). Die voorgestelde raamwerkkan dus uitgebrei word om ook ander onderwerpe uit Operasionele Navorsing in te sluit. Die hoop word uitgespreek dat RECTOR, soos GEORGE, in die toekorns gebruik sal word as hulpmiddel in die klaskamer, as addisionele ondersteuning vir tradisionele onderrig, as plaasvervanger ten dele (vir sekere gedeeltes van die kurrikulum), as 'n rekenomgewing en as 'n kennisaanvuller.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/51097
This item appears in the following collections: