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Community-organizing agent: An artificial intelligent system for building learning communities among large numbers of learners

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Computers & Education Volume 49, Number 2, ISSN 0360-1315 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


Web-based (or online) learning provides an unprecedented flexibility and convenience to both learners and instructors. However, large online classes relying on instructor-centered presentations could tend to isolate many learners. The size of these classes and the wide dispersion of the learners make it challenging for instructors to interact with individual learners or to facilitate learner collaborations. Since extensive literature has confirmed that the substantial impact of learner interaction on learning outcomes, it is pedagogically critical to help distributed learners engage in community-based collaborative learning and to help individual learners improve their self-regulation. The E-learning lab of Shanghai Jiaotong University created an artificial intelligence system to help guide learners with similar interests into reasonably sized learning communities. The system uses a multi-agent mechanism to organize and reorganize supportive communities based on learners’ learning interests, experiences, and behaviors. Through effective award and exchange algorithms, learners with similar interests and experiences will form a community to support each others’ learning. Simulated experimental results indicate that these algorithms can improve the speed and efficiency in identifying and grouping homogeneous learners. Here, we will describe this system in detail and present its mechanism for organizing learning communities. We will conduct human experimentations in the near future to further perfect the system.


Yang, F., Wang, M., Shen, R. & Han, P. (2007). Community-organizing agent: An artificial intelligent system for building learning communities among large numbers of learners. Computers & Education, 49(2), 131-147. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved May 9, 2021 from .

This record was imported from Computers & Education on January 30, 2019. Computers & Education is a publication of Elsevier.

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