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2006Research Conference | June 15–16

This conference highlighted the work of invited speakers, independent researchers who have received grant funds from the Institute of Education Sciences, and trainees supported through predoctoral training grants and postdoctoral fellowships. The presentations are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the U.S. Department of Education or the Institute of Education Sciences.
Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill
400 New Jersey Avenue, N.W.
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Integrated Software for Artificial Intelligence Tutoring and Assessment in Science

Benny G. Johnson, Quantum Simulations, Inc.
Dale A. Holder, Quantum Simulations, Inc.

Abstract: The purpose of this project is to advance the state of the art in science educational software by developing powerful new artificial intelligence (AI) tools for computerized assessment of student work in science, beginning with chemistry, building on and integrating with Quantum's successful interactive intelligent tutoring technology in chemistry. This work addresses a longstanding, clearly articulated need for improved software in chemistry education. With the advent of NCLB, the importance to teachers and students of sophisticated high-quality tools for individualized assessment has never been greater, and the goal of this work is to build advanced assessment capabilities to achieve the same power and sophistication as recently achieved for interactive tutoring.

The intervention proposed is to place a comprehensive set of AI tutoring systems with integrated AI assessment capabilities in the hands of every student in a chemistry class, to use on demand through the Internet during study time at home and at school. Though making a meaningful impact on science achievement is difficult, to succeed it is clear that students must have the opportunity for sustained, quality practice with science concepts during their own study time. The AI technology is primarily intended to be used in a supplementary role to reinforce classroom instruction, by giving students the individual assistance and assessment they need at home to get the most out of the day's lesson. By making integrated AI tutoring and assessment available to students on demand, including at home, the quality and effectiveness of at-home study time will be increased.