Personalized Learning

World of education has been seeing numerous changes with the advent of edtech, elearning, assessment tools, knowledge enhancing ancillaries, online forums and social media, which are collectively changing the way learning is delivered and consumed. Personalized or adaptive learning is seen as a disruptive development, although having been present in some form for a long time in modern world, personalized learning in the time of artificial intelligence can take an entirely new route, the effect being diverse and the efficacy being amplified by powerful machine learning technologies.

While adaptive learning technology is an aspect of high-caliber learning management systems or lms like iPublishCentral Scholar, its implementation in classrooms and elearning is a part of the overall learning strategy of the concerned institution/ department/ class. The practice may not work well for all subjects, age groups, learning strategies etc, however it extends the application of ‘differentiated instruction’ as an education philosophy for effective teaching, so that all students within a classroom can learn effectively, regardless of differences in prior knowledge.

Audrey Watters, an education writer and independent scholar says in an article that personalized learning depending on how you define it, dates back to Rousseau, or it dates back further still to Alexander the Great’s personal tutor, Aristotle. She further cites a timeline of numerous other instances until modern computers to Gates’ Foundation, which she claims denote the existence of some form of personalized learning

Sidney Pressey, a psychology professor at Ohio State University from 1921 to 1959 assembled a prototype out of typewriter parts and demo-ed it at the 1924 meeting of the American Psychological Association. Pressey’s machine had a window with a question and four answers. The student pressed the key to their chosen answer. The machine recorded the answer and would advance automatically to the next question, calculating the number of correct responses along the way. Alternately, a lever in the back could change its operation slightly, and the machine would not move on to the next question until the test-taker got it right, tabulating the number of tries on each question.

Jumping back to the present, the results of the latest National Assessment of Educational Progress, often called “the nation’s report card,” are cause for concern. Only 37 percent of American fourth-graders have the reading skills they need — and that number is not improving. Mark Johnson, North Carolina’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, says that “the underpinnings of our education system were designed in the early 20th century with early-20th-century tools to meet the needs of an industrial society, we require teachers to convey standard information from standard textbooks at a standard pace”

The problem with the traditional method of classroom education is that it doesn’t accommodate the fact that every learner has different aptitude and pace of learning. Adaptive learning is a working concept realized with technology which analyses learner’s skill level through advanced machine learning and creates a self learning environment for each student. Phil Regier, university dean for educational initiatives and CEO of EdPlus at Arizona State University, at the recently concluded ASU+GSV Conference, described personalized learning as “an ability to use technology to give right lessons to right students at the right time. And that technology now allows us to do that for thousands of students at the same time”

Artificial intelligence takes adaptive learning to next level, with the help of AI adaptive learning platforms can build scientifically generated profiles of each learner, big data with its all pervasive power in information helps build a pedagogical profile for students. The goal of achieving a certain learning outcome can be reached through a personalized path. Artificial intelligence assisted adaptive learning platforms can be leagues ahead of Pressey’s machine, students can work at their own pace and advance when they have mastered a concept.

Dr. Liz City is lecturer on education and director of the Doctor of Education Leadership Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, in a video here she talks about how we can change the learning environment in US so that we don’t have the same industrial model schools from 125 years back, and how we can reimagine school as a place that provides amazing learning opportunities that meets the needs of different individuals.

Adaptive learning, enabled by artificial intelligence – ability to predict the next most appropriate output based on information from the past events, ability of total recall – builds a huge system based on big data to know students’ exact weaknesses and helps them to improve. AI-powered learning tools can transform into lifelong companions for individuals to gather knowledge about new subjects, beyond formal learning and measure their knowledge in the form of assessments and shape their learning experience in real time. It helps create individualized education plans, casting off the shackles of its ‘industrial model’ of schooling.

Adaptive Learning

We learn our entire life, there is no end of learning. We all read and learn about different things and we learn in our own unique pace and method. In the largely prevailing education systems a group/ class of learners is made to learn a standard course in a pace consistent for the entire class, but the truth is that we all have our individually unique pace of learning. And so when a group of students is delivered same lessons at same pace a few of the students may lag in comprehension while few others might learn faster. Adaptive learning is a concept wherein every student is provided with her own individual path of learning depending on how much she already knows or what she needs to know and the amount of time she needs to comprehend a particular concept.

Adaptive learning came into form a few years back when researchers in education wanted to exploit modern technology for the advantage of education. Number of colleges and universities had realized that a standard catchall learning approach is not fully efficient, initial investigative models of adaptive learning brought positive results and a huge amount of investment money began to pour in to enhance the technology. According to a Gartner estimate a big chunk of the investment of $67.8 bn in technology in education sector will go towards developing adaptive learning and adaptive eBooks. With successive refinement and improvisation adaptive learning is now fully implemented in many schools and universities across the world.

The concept of adaptive eBooks takes its origin from the fact that every reader/ student has a unique learning curve and that personalized content aligned to the reader’s learning curve can promote improved learning outcomes. The method was conceived a long ago but recent spurt in technology has made it possible to capture learner data, on the basis of which the algorithm delivers different topics to the learner to master it. The topics are delivered based on the learner’s knowledge consumption capability, she doesn’t have to go through topics of which she has prior understanding, thus saving time and effort. The system also keeps a track of student’s progress and, based on her performance reports are generated, it helps in understanding the areas where more work is needed, It also supports instructor’s teaching goals.

With an expanding area of research and development adaptive learning is attracting investments and grants, the technology will further evolve and the market will grow in coming years urging providers of learning like universities, colleges, professional associations and organisations to adopt it sooner than later. Providing anywhere anytime access working on online platforms adaptive learning helps student progress in multiple ways, like, increased control – students can focus on what they need to know and skip the familiar topics. More engagement, fun and sense of accomplishment. Deep learning – better memorization, information retention for longer time. Higher confidence and increased credits.

Adaptive eBooks from Impelsys are new form of learning resource that have raised personalized learning to its pinnacle. Stressing on productive learning through fluid content Impelsys Adaptive eBooks are designed to improve learning outcomes through personalized learning paths. Adaptive learning is the newest and one of the most influential breakthrough in education technology in last many decades, which will have a significant effect in the ways formal education will be provided in future.

Adaptive Learning

A personal tutor who can interact with you with infinite patience, who knows your level of comprehension of concepts being learned or assessed for. An untiring teacher who will review with you a lesson as long as you totally fathom it and only then move forward, who is ready to skip a topic if you have prior understanding of it. This seems a far fetched dream of every student, however technology always attempts to provide humans with what they themselves can’t.

Adaptive learning is a working concept realized with technology which analyses learner’s skill level through advanced machine learning and creates a self learning environment for each student. In simplest words it is a personalized learning path carved for each student, it saves time and effort if you already know the lesson, and puts extra effort and time to make you comprehend a lesson, if there is a need. It’s a learning technique centered around the interests and needs of each individual learner as opposed to universal standards. Rapidly adopted by schools and universities across the developed part of the world, adaptive learning is touted to revolutionize education in future.

While adaptive learning technology is an aspect of high-caliber learning management systems or lms like iPublishCentral Learn, its implementation in classrooms and elearning is a part of the overall learning strategy of the concerned institution/ department/ class. The practice may not work well for all subjects, age groups, learning strategy etc, however it extends the application of ‘differentiated instruction’ as an education philosophy for effective teaching, so that all students within a classroom can learn effectively, regardless of differences in ability.

In large public schools, classrooms are bigger and students show varying levels of aptitude, this results in inconsistent learning outcomes and teacher burnout in some cases. Personalized learning carves the necessary learning path for each student, it works with an individualized timeline and effort. The feedback loop and levels of task work to bring each student at the desired proficiency, by allowing more practice and review for those who are lagging behind.

Learning in social environment is not free of inhibitions for students, varied intellect and social restraints among students make it difficult for them to fully involve and interact, technology enabled learning attempts to provide a democratic learning opportunities for quiet and reticent students. The little private space with personalized learning environment – it works as a  personal guide tailored for your unique learning requirements.

Technology has been pervading into education since the information technology revolution, and it lately has been evolving into a hi-tech industry. It’s not about projectors or computers, it’s a strategic overhaul of how education in delivered. It requires infrastructural and resource expansion which is not feasible for all economies. Hesitation towards new technology is a natural tendency, just like it took almost half a decade for electricity powered factories to take off after successful demonstration, it will be only after some time to see the outcomes and streamlining of edtech globally. Adaptive learning will be one of the leading practice with its potential of delivering equal and individualized opportunities to all – a personal tutor for the mass, a great equalizer in education.

https://www.impelsys.com/online-learning/elearning-trends-radar-year-2018/