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The Future of Adaptive Tutoring and Personalized Instruction: Introduction to the Special Issue

Wilhelmina C. Savenye and J. Michael Spector

We welcome you heartily to this special issue of Technology, Instruction, Cognition and Learning (TICL). The four papers comprising this special issue were originally presented as part of a session sponsored by the TICL Special Interest Group at the 2009 annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association. TICL is especially interested in research and developments that build on sound theoretical foundations cutting across the four SIG areas that contribute to building a body of cumulative science and technology aimed at improving learning, instruction and performance. In these four papers the authors review the state of the art in adaptive tutoring and personalized instruction along with promising new developments grounded in theory and research. The developments in intelligent tutoring systems in the last twenty years have led to a deeper understanding of the challenges in creating robust and generalizable algorithms for a broad range of subject areas. Success has been largely in the area of well-structured problems for which there exist many known and well documented misconceptions and mistakes in student problem solving.

There has as yet been insufficient exploration of the intersecting domains of individual student problem conceptualization, technology support for problem conceptualization, and problem selection within the context of challenging and complex problems. The articles that comprise this special issue focus on a view of the whole individual (e.g. both cognitive and non-cognitive aspects) as well as the whole task, including simplified but entire tasks that build towards competency in solving increasingly complex problems…

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