From Modelling Domain knowledge to Metacognitive Skills: Extending a Constraint-based Tutoring System to Support Collaboration
Constraint-based tutors have been shown to increase individual learning in real classroom studies, but would become even more effective if they provided support for collaboration. COLLECT-UML is a constraint-based intelligent tutoring system that teaches object-oriented analysis and design using Unified Modelling Language. Being one of constraint-based tutors, COLLECT-UML represents the domain knowledge as a set of constraints. However, it is the first system to also represent a higher-level skill such as collaboration using the same formalism. We started by developing a single-user ITS. The system was evaluated in a real classroom, and the results showed that students’ performance increased significantly. In this paper, we present our experiences in extending the system to provide support for collaboration as well as problem-solving. The effectiveness of the system was evaluated in a study conducted at the University of Canterbury in May 2006. In addition to improved problem-solving skills, the participants both acquired declarative knowledge about good collaboration and did collaborate more effectively. The results, therefore, show that Constraint-Based Modelling is an effective technique for modelling and supporting collaboration skills.