Accepted Papers

Exploiting Cognitive Structure for Adaptive Learning

Qi Liu (University of Science and Technology of China);Shiwei Tong (University of Science and Technology of China);Chuanren Liu (Drexel University);Hongke Zhao (The College of Management and Economics, Tianjin University);Enhong Chen (University of Science and Technology of China);Haiping Ma (IFLYTEK CO., LTD.);Shijin Wang (IFLYTEK CO., LTD.);


Adaptive learning, also known as adaptive teaching, relies on learning path recommendation, which sequentially recommends personalized learning items (e.g., lectures, exercises) to satisfy the unique needs of each learner. Although it is well known that modeling the cognitive structure including knowledge level of learners and knowledge structure (e.g., the prerequisite relations) of learning items is important for learning path recommendation, existing methods for adaptive learning often separately focus on either knowledge levels of learners or knowledge structure of learning items. To fully exploit the multifaceted cognitive structure for learning path recommendation, we propose a Cognitive Structure Enhanced framework for Adaptive Learning, named CSEAL. By viewing path recommendation as a Markov Decision Process and applying an actor-critic algorithm, CSEAL can sequentially identify the right learning items to different learners. Specifically, we first utilize a recurrent neural network to trace the evolving knowledge levels of learners at each learning step. Then, we design a navigation algorithm on the knowledge structure to ensure the logicality of learning paths, which reduces the search space in the decision process. Finally, the actor-critic algorithm is used to determine what to learn next and whose parameters are dynamically updated along the learning path. Extensive experiments on real-world data demonstrate the effectiveness and robustness of CSEAL.

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