Adaptation based on learning style and knowledge level in e-learning systems

Alshammari, Mohammad (2016). Adaptation based on learning style and knowledge level in e-learning systems. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Although there have been numerous attempts to build and evaluate adaptive e-learning systems, they tend to be limited in scope, and suffer from a lack of carefully designed and controlled experimental evaluations of their effectiveness and usability. This thesis addresses these issues through the implementation of an adaptive e-learning system and its experimental validation. The design of an adaptive framework and the specific instantiation of its components into a configurable adaptive e-learning system are presented. The domain model of the system deals with computer security. The learner model incorporates the information perception dimension of the Felder-Silverman model of learning style and also knowledge level. The adaptation model generates personalised learning paths and offers adaptive guidance and recommendation.

The thesis also provides an empirical evaluation through three controlled experiments to investigate the effect of different forms of adaptation. Rigorous experimental design, careful investigation and precise reporting of results are taken into account in all the three experiments. The findings indicate that matching the sequence of learning objects to the information perception learning style yields significantly better learning outcome and learner satisfaction than non-matching sequences. They also indicate that adaptation based on the combination of the information perception learning style and knowledge level yields significantly better learning outcome (both in the short- and long-term) and learner satisfaction than adaptation based on either of these learner characteristics alone; this combination is also marked by a significantly higher level of perceived usability compared to a non-adaptive version of the e-learning system.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
School or Department: School of Computer Science
Funders: Other
Other Funders: Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia - Cultural Bureau in London (UK), University of Ha'il, Saudi Arabia
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science


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