Alumnus: Dror Ben-Naim
State-of-the-art Education Technology Goes Global
One of the best things in University life is learning from inspiring teachers in stimulating learning environments. But with increasing numbers of students, it is becoming difficult to provide the personal guidance and feedback they require.
Dr Dror Ben-Naim, a part of the Adaptive eLearning Research Group is revolutionising academic life by developing an Intelligent Tutoring Systems – a computer-based educational environment that can intelligently adapt to students’ level of knowledge and provide students with the unique help that they need, when they need it.
Working at the intersection between artificial intelligence, data mining, cognitive psychology and education, the group has developed the Adaptive eLearning Platform, which is a powerful online suite of tools that help teachers and software developers to produce content that adapts to learners and not the other way around.
“As students work, we track their learning path and are able to adapt the content to their knowledge“ says Dror, who is a recent graduate from UNSW COMPUTING and who worked on Adaptive eLearning as part of his postgraduate studies. “While students work, our adaptivity engine models their knowledge and learning style, so that it can adapt the teaching, specific to their learning”.
Consider the following: prior to class, students play in 3D virtual worlds that use real-time simulations, powered by Artificial Intelligence and mind-blowing graphics; yet in their eLearning experience, students are limited to engage with PDFs and PowerPoint presentations. “We are changing all that” says Dror, “the existing paradigm of lecture/ tutorial/ lab does not give students enough opportunity for getting feedback”.
The Adaptive eLearning Research Group has been collaborating with over 50 academics at UNSW to build advanced and intelligent content such as: adaptive simulations in Mechanics, Virtual Microscopy activities in Medicine, smart spreadsheets for Finance and virtual laboratories in Science. Each year more than 10,000 students at UNSW are studying using the most advanced, next generation educational technology.
'The Adaptive eLearning Platform is currently going through the process of commercialization and is a good example of how CSE is awesome!", says Dror.