Computer Tutor

From the invention of the wheel to autonomous vehicles; from drawing on cave walls to tweeting in 140 characters or less – technology changes everything.

Now computer science and psychology researchers from Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh are using technology to evolve education. They founded the Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center (PSLC) where they’re identifying which instructional conditions lead to the most effective learning.

The goal: foster robust learning – i.e. knowledge is retained, transferred to new situations or used to accelerate future learning.


Researchers use computerized tutors that record data as students learn, detecting what is being learned as well as what learning skills are being used. This database enables the programs to intervene at appropriate times, either prompting students to ask for help or encouraging them work through it on their own.

Currently these programs are helping middle school, high school, and college students with their math, science, and second language across the country.

Learn more by downloading an interview with Carnegie Mellon’s Ken Koedinger, Director of the PSLC, on iTunes U.

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