News & Events
IT in EducationJoint seminar by CITE and Faculty of Education: Can Computers Teach You To Think And Care? The Modeling Debates Revisited
- 12 Oct 2010
- 12:45pm - 2:00pm
- Room 101, 1/F., Runme Shaw Bldg., HKU
- Dr. Susanne P. Lajoie, ATLAS Laboratory, McGill University, Montréal, Canada
The seminar is organized by CITE and Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong
Researchers in the AIED community ask provocative questions to improve the quality of teaching and learning across disciplines. I address Self’s question of how to design computers that care in the context of the modeling debates. In the 90’s Derry and Lajoie  posed the question "to model or not to model?" when they described 3 camps of researchers pursuing uses of technology for teaching and learning. The first camp modeled learning and implemented such models into intelligent tutoring systems that could adapt to individual differences. The second camp were the non-modelers who chose not to have the computer diagnose errors but rather envisioned the use of technology as a cognitive tool that situated experiences for learners in authentic contexts. Finally, there was a middle camp that combined cognitive apprenticeship, constructivist learning, and cognitive tools with computer-based student modeling. This last camp adheres to the belief that computers should serve part of the cognitive mentorship function without giving over control of the learning and assessment process to those using the system.
Volume 2 of computers as cognitive tools  was intended to bring down the camp walls by focusing on the learning paradigms that guided the design of cognitive tools, including information processing, constructivism, and situativity. Researchers demonstrated the value in modeling both individual knowledge construction and learning in social situations through the use of technology. Computer and human tutors, as well as peers were considered as assisting in the modeling and the new guiding question was: who or what should do the modeling? New cognitive tools were designed with multiple forms of knowledge representation and demonstrations were provided of how such representations could be used for assessment purposes.
A decade later, the question is how do we engage individuals as they make rapid decisions with technologies . Modeling approaches that examine the role of affect, emotion, and culture in medicine are described for individual and joint decision-making.
 Self, J. (1999). The defining characteristics of intelligent tutoring systems research: ITSs care, precisely. International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education. 10(3-4), 350-364.
 Derry, S. J., & Lajoie, S. P. (1993). A middle camp for (un)intelligent computing. In S. P. Lajoie & S. J. Derry (Eds.), Computers as cognitive tools (pp.1 -11). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
 Lajoie, S. P. (Ed.). (2000). Computers as cognitive tools (vol. 2): No more walls (pp. 1-430). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
 Halverson, R., & Collins, A. (2006). How information technologies weaken the identification of learning with schooling. Review and Practice in Technology Enhanced Learning, 1(2), 145-155.
- About the speaker(s):
Dr. Lajoie is a James McGill Professor in the Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology at McGill University. She received her Doctorate from Stanford University in 1986. She is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association as well as the American Educational Research Association for her outstanding contributions to research in the field of education and psychology. She is the recipient of the Carrie Derick Award for graduate supervision and teaching. Dr. Lajoie is engaged in a wide array of innovative research and scholarly activities where she applies cognitive theories to education and training in multiple domains involving diverse learner populations (e.g., high school, higher education). She directs the Advanced Technologies for Learning in Authentic Settings Laboratory (ATLAS) where she uses a theory based approach to the design of computers as cognitive tools across disciplines. Her research is strongly interdisciplinary, using theories of cognitive science, educational psychology, and computer science (i.e., artificial intelligence) and the results of her research have changed theory in practice in such diverse fields as avionics troubleshooting, instruction and assessment of statistics, and cognitive tools for science and medicine.