Sequencing Educational Content in Classrooms using Bayesian Knowledge Tracing

This work was presented at HAIDM 2015. The 2015 workshop on Human-Agent Interaction Design and Models was co-organised by SmartSociety.

Abstract: Despite the prevalence of e-learning systems in schools, most of today’s systems do not personalize educational data to the individual needs of each student. This paper proposes a new algorithm for sequencing questions to students that is empirically shown to lead to better performance and engagement in real schools when compared to a baseline approach. It is based on using knowledge tracing to model students’ skill acquisition over time, and to select questions that advance the student’s learning within the range of the student’s capabilities, as determined by the model. The algorithm is based on a Bayesian Knowledge Tracing (BKT) model that incorporates partial credit scores, reasoning about multiple attempts to solve problems, and integrating item difficulty. This model is shown to outperform other BKT models that do not reason about (or reason about some but not all) of these features. The model was incorporated into a sequencing algorithm and deployed in two classes in different schools where it was compared to a baseline sequencing algorithm that was designed by pedagogical experts. In both classes, students using the BKT sequencing approach solved more difficult questions and attributed higher performance than did students who used the expert-based approach. Students were also more engaged using the BKT approach, as determined by their interaction time and number of log-ins to the system, as well as their reported opinion. We expect our approach to inform the design of better methods for sequencing and personalizing educational content to students that will meet their individual learning needs.

Citation: Yossi Ben David, Avi Segal, and Kobi Gal. Sequencing Educational Content in Classrooms using Bayesian Knowledge Tracing.


About P. Andreadis

Pre-Doctoral Research Assistant in AI and Social Computation @ University of Edinburgh.

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