Enabling adaptive, personalised and context-aware interaction in a smart learning environment: Piloting the iCollab system
Keywords:smart learning environments, intelligent tutoring systems, context awareness, adaptive learning, personalised learning, learning analytics
Smart learning environments (SLE) provide students with opportunities to interact with learning resources and activities in ways that are customised to their particular learning goals and approaches. A challenge in developing SLEs is providing resources and tasks within a single system that can seamlessly tailor learning experience in terms of time, place, platform, and form. In this paper we introduce the iCollab platform, an adaptive environment where learning activities are moderated through conversation with an intelligent agent who can operate across multiple web-based platforms, integrating formal and informal learning opportunities. Fifty-eight undergraduate computer science students were randomly assigned to either an intervention or control group for the 12 weeks of the pilot study. Learning analytics were used to examine their interactions with iCollab, while their course performance investigated the impact of using iCollab on learning outcomes. Results from the study showed a high level of interaction with iCollab, especially social interaction, indicating an interweaving of formal learning within their informal network spaces. These findings open up new possibilities for ways that SLEs can be designed to incorporate different factors, improving the ability of the system to provide adaptive and personalised learning experiences in relation to context and time.
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