March 21, 2007

Baby Steps towards Individualized Education

A very, very rough and incomplete prototype is up and running now at I hope it’s enough to illustrate some concepts and to recruit some great people to make it real.

Here’s a brief demo you can run through yourself. Assume you’re an 11th grade physics student that wants help in understanding the concept of center of mass. You’re a visual learner that does best seeing an example before diving into equations:

  1. Search for “center of mass” (the link jumps to the results)
  2. Click on the video in the upper right corner (brown-vested professor)
  3. Watch the video for a few seconds, but click the “I’m done watching above video” once you realize you’re not a chalk-talk-at-MIT kind of learner
  4. Click on the “My Style” tab; then click the first/only link “Lesson 11: Center of Mass”
  5. Return to the search result, and click “keep” to save it (and any others you like) for future reference
  6. Rate your “keepers” to help improve the correlation of instructional materials with your particular learning style (not implemented yet, but the intent is to feed ratings into the XML annotations for the CSE for that subject)

The rudimentary Custom Search Engines for science, math, history and english were just thrown together for this demo; there’s much more to do before the demo reflects the kind of specialization that’s possible with CSEs done right (beyond actually populating them - thinking through the granularity of CSEs, the labeling, the feedback loop, etc.)

But this baby step will help us discuss next steps. If the possibilities spark your interest, please let me know (and/or subscribe to the My Kind of Mind group). It’s exciting to think of millions of students with their own personal tutor on any subject.

1 comment:

panzermike said...

I think homeschooling is rad as as well. What do you think?