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REAL: Facilitate Thinking in an Object-oriented Way

, , , Teachers College, Columbia University, United States

EdMedia + Innovate Learning, in Montreal, Canada ISBN 978-1-880094-56-3 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC


Our group REAL (REflective Agent Learning environment) attempts to investigate the impact of thinking in an object-oriented way, by developing a novel framework that allows students to model the real world, and thus learn to implicitly represent knowledge in an object-orientated mindset. The present implementation, an agent called REAL-Planet, is developed for the domain of biology, environmental science, ecology and sustainability. This reflective agent is an autonomous cognitive character, like an avatar, that can decide how to behave on its own, according to an object-oriented representation of some knowledge about its world taught to it by students. The use of the term "reflective" gives the agent two layers of meaning: that of reflecting the user's content knowledge back to him/her, and that of reflecting the user's mental model of the domain back to him/her. We hope this encouragement of metacognition (thinking about thinking) would help students improve their thinking and reasoning skills, thus helping them solve the real world problem in a more efficient way.


Bai, X., Saravanos, A. & Black, J. (2005). REAL: Facilitate Thinking in an Object-oriented Way. In P. Kommers & G. Richards (Eds.), Proceedings of ED-MEDIA 2005--World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia & Telecommunications (pp. 3383-3387). Montreal, Canada: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved November 18, 2019 from .



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