Carnegie Mellon University
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Designing for Metacognition - Applying Cognitive Tutor Principles to the Tutoring of Help Seeking

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journal contribution
posted on 2007-01-01, 00:00 authored by Ido Roll, Vincent Aleven, Bruce McLaren, Kenneth R Koedinger
Intelligent Tutoring Systems have been shown to be very effective in supporting learning in domains such as mathematics, physics, computer programming, etc. However, they are yet to achieve similar success in tutoring metacognition. While an increasing number of educational technology systems support productive metacognitive behavior within the scope of the system, few attempt to teach skills students need to become better future learners. To that end, we offer a set of empirically-based design principles for metacognitive tutoring. Our starting point is a set of design principles put forward by Anderson et al. (Journal of the Learning Sciences, 4:167–207, 1995) regarding Cognitive Tutors, a family of Intelligent Tutoring Systems. We evaluate the relevance of these principles to the tutoring of help-seeking skills, based on our ongoing empirical work with the Help Tutor. This auxiliary tutor agent is designed to help students learn to make effective use of the help facilities offered by a Cognitive Tutor. While most of Anderson’s principles are relevant to the tutoring of help seeking, a number of differences emerge as a result of the nature of metacognitive knowledge and of the need to combine metacognitive and domain-level tutoring. We compare our approach to other metacognitive tutoring systems, and, where appropriate, propose new guidelines to promote the discussion regarding the nature and design of metacognitive tutoring within scaffolded problem solving environments.




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