We have developed a set of tools for improving online collaborative learning including an automated expert that monitors and moderates discussions, and additional tools to evaluate contributions, semantically search all posted comments, access a library of hundreds of digital books and provide reports to instructors. The technology behind these tools is Latent Semantic Analysis (LSA), a machine learning technology that understands the meaning of words and text in ways that agree highly with human judgments. These tools were evaluated in a series of studies with the U.S. Army War College and U.S. Air Force Academy. At the Army War College, we found that the automated monitor was as accurate at identifying discussion groups in trouble as trained human instructors, and has the potential to effectively reduce the amount of time instructors spend monitoring distance learning courses. At the Air Force Academy, the expert moderator significantly improved the quality of cadets’ discussion comments in a collaborative learning environment.
provides a place for Sloan-C members and others to secure education and professional development about online eteaching and learning. Sloan-C offers wide ranging knowledge for those interested in deepening both pedagogical and practitioner aspects of their teaching practice.
includes valuable resources to help you and your faculty gain effectiveness in online teaching and learning, with discounted pricing on Sloan-C conferences and workshops, free webinars, discussion groups and peer networking, awards eligibility and more.
The Sloan Consortium offers three annual conferences, each focusing on a different area of interest in online learning and located in a different region of the country. Join us in Las Vegas, NV in the Spring for the Emerging Technologies for Online Learning International Symposium, in Milwaukee, WI in the Summer for the Blended Learning Conference & Workshop, and in Orlando, FL in the Autumn for our Annual International Conference on Online Learning.
The Online Learning Revolution is the new reality!
With more than 6.7 million students taking at least one online course in 2011, and growing faster than traditional enrollments, are you ready to participate or expand activities in this growing market?
We can help!