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My Research

I am currently studying for the qualification of PhD, as a researcher at the University of Birmingham. I am a member of the Educational Technology research group, a part of the department of Electronic, Electrical, and Computer Engineering. The title of my current research is "Presentation of Open Learner Models". This is supervised by Susan Bull.


Open Learner Modelling

Intelligent tutoring systems are aim to provide a user with an individualised educational experience. This may be done by guiding them through study material or recommending what to do next. In order to adapt to the needs of the individual, the system must build a model of their characteristics, such as level of understanding on various concepts. This is called the learner model.

An open learner model is one whose contents can be viewed by the person using the system. Researchers have argued that this approach can enhance the level of reflection for the learner and improve their self assessment skills.

Learning Styles

It is frequently acknowledged that individuals learn in different ways, with some of these preferences termed as learning styles. For example, when learning something new, some people prefer to do something active with the information in the real world, while others prefer to sit back and think it over. Some individuals process information better when it arrives externally, through the senses; others prefer information arising intuitively. Closely related is the idea of cognitive styles, which covers preferences for information reception (such as images vs. text) and organisation (such as processing sequentially in chunks, or more "all at one").

Individualised Interaction with an Open Learner Model

Much of my work looks at how we can make the interaction with the model more effective by individualising it to each specific learner. This may involve providing different presentation options to the learner, or even making decisions for them based on their learning style.


My paper entitled "Alternative Views on Knowledge: Presentation of Open Learner Models" is due to appear at ITS2004. I will post here shortly.

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