2017 Mary Hennessey Blum Lecture

Dr. Kenneth R. Koedinger

Professor, Human-Computer Interaction Institute, School of Computer Science and Psychology Department, Humanities and Social Sciences, Carnegie Mellon University. 


Presentation Title: Practical Learning Research at Scale

Date: February 23, 2017

Location: MUB Theater II


Abstract of Presentation:

Massive scale education has emerged through online tools such as Wikipedia, Khan Academy, and MOOCs. The number of students being reached is high, but what about the quality of the educational experience? As we scale learning, we need to scale research to address this question. Such learning research should not just determine whether high quality has been achieved, but it should provide a process for how to reliably produce high quality learning. Scaling practical learning research is as much an opportunity as a problem. The opportunity comes from the fact that online courses are not only good for widespread delivery, but are natural vehicles for data collection and experimental instrumentation. I will provide examples of research done in the context of widely used educational technologies that both contribute interesting scientific findings and have practical implications for increasing the quality of learning at scale.


Dr. Koedinger's Bio:

Kenneth R. Koedinger is a professor of Human Computer Interaction and Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Koedinger has an M.S. in Computer Science, a Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology, and experience teaching in an urban high school. His multidisciplinary background supports his research goals of understanding human learning and creating educational technologies that increase student achievement. Dr. Koedinger has created Cognitive Models, computer simulations of student thinking and learning that are used to guide the design of educational materials, practices, and technologies. These Cognitive Models provide the basis for an approach to educational technology called Cognitive Tutors that support learning within rich problem-solving environments. Cognitive Tutors for mathematics, science, and language have been created, are in uses in 100s of schools, and have been repeatedly demonstrated to improve student learning. Dr. Koedinger’s research has contributed new principles and techniques for the design of educational software and has produced basic cognitive science research results on the nature of mathematical thinking and learning. Dr. Koedinger has authored over 245 peer-reviewed publications and has been a project investigator on over 45 grants. Dr. Koedinger is a co-founder of Carnegie Learning, Inc. and leads LearnLab (see learnlab.org), now the scientific arm of CMU’s Simon Initiative (see cmu.edu/simon).


Please click here to access Dr. Koedinger's CV.