Conference Paper

STI-DICO: A Web-Based ITS for Fostering Dictionary Skills and Knowledge

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Abstract

A major issue in introducing new technological tools in the classroom is that the teachers who are meant to use them often do not receive the necessary training. This is the case of electronic dictionaries, which are seldom used by both students and teachers, despite their benefits for improving vocabulary development and academic achievement [14]. We propose to address this issue with STI-DICO, an Intelligent Tutoring System (ITS) to help French teachers-in-training acquire both the linguistic knowledge and the practical skills needed to successfully use electronic dictionaries [7]. ITS are advanced intelligent learning environments aiming at providing learners with adaptive tutoring services, relying on a cognitive diagnostic to adapt to learners’ knowledge states at each step of the learning process, based on a formal modeling of the knowledge domain [11]. In this paper, we describe our design-based approach to STI-DICO, the first iterations of which have resulted in the development of a repository of linguistic and meta-linguistic skills, paired with an ontology of lexical concepts and supported by a series of authentic learning activities, all created with the active participation of experts in the field.

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... In the context of e-learning, there is no single model for the structured content or for the learner profile, which makes the need for ontology more essential [42]. Recently, ontologies and semantic web have been widely used in ITSs, e.g., represent natural language question into meaningful viewpoint and performing problemsolving without human involvement [43], helping teachers to acquire both linguistic knowledge and practical skills using an ontology of lexical concepts [44], to design a concrete game-based ITS [45] and so forth. ...
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L’évaluation de l’ontologie a permis de vérifier la méthode de construction de celle-ci, ainsi que différents aspects relatifs à la structuration des concepts dans l’ontologie. L’évaluation du module de cours a quant à elle montré que les contenus de cours étaient pertinents, les méthodes pédagogiques employées appropriées et le matériel de cours développé bien conçu. Cela nous permet d'affirmer que le module de cours en didactique du lexique se présente comme un apport intéressant à la formation des futurs enseignants du primaire en français langue première au Québec. La recherche dans son ensemble présente enfin une contribution pertinente à la didactique du lexique, son caractère original résidant entre autres dans le fait d’avoir développé un mécanisme d’exploitation d’une base de connaissances (ontologie des savoirs lexicologiques) pour la conception didactique (module de cours en didactique du lexique). To improve first language learning in Québec primary schools, several variables must be taken into account, one of them the teachers themselves. Their training gives them the necessary knowledge to guide pupils in the development of their linguistic competences. One of these, lexical competence, plays a central role in the mastery of language. Lexical competence is the ability to understand and use lexical units, in oral speech as well as in written speech. To help pupils develop their lexical competence, teachers must not only themselves possess an appropriate level of lexical competence, but must in addition have acquired a certain amount of metalexical knowledge, that is, knowledge about the structure of the lexicon. The ministerial guide to the teaching profession (MEQ, 2001b) provides no guidance regarding metalexical knowledge required of future teachers. Moreover, there are no courses specifically devoted to lexical didactics. It is nevertheless in these kinds of courses that future teachers learn to prepare and guide activities in vocabulary acquisition and to evaluate their pupils' lexical competence. The scarcity of these kinds of courses in Québec universities may be explained by the youth of the discipline, whose theoretical linguistics foundations are still under construction. This dissertation on the didactics of French as a first language addresses the question of reference linguistic content for lexical didactics, as well as the training of future teachers in that discipline. Our research led to two complementary outcomes. The first outcome was to construct an ontology of lexicological knowledge. The second was the use of the ontology to specify and structure the content of a course in lexical didactics, devoted to the acquisition of metalexical knowledge by future teachers. Both the ontology and the course have been evaluated and validated by domain experts. The evaluation of the ontology supported the method used for its elaboration, as well as the structure of the concepts in the ontology. The evaluation of the course indicated that the course's content and pedagogical methods were correct and that the learning and teaching material were well designed. These results prove that the course is a useful tool for improving a teacher's training in lexical didactics. Our research as a whole makes a meaningful contribution to the intended domains, by developing a way to use a knowledge base (the ontology of lexicological knowledge) for educational purposes (a course in lexical didactics).
Article
Cet article propose une réflexion en deux points sur la terminologie grammaticale scolaire, c'est-à-dire la terminologie métalinguistique employée dans le contexte scolaire de l'enseignement de la grammaire au primaire et au secondaire. Premièrement, en partant de l'analyse des pratiques en cours telles qu'on peut les inférer des programmes ministériels d'enseignement du français, nous montrerons que l'élaboration d'une terminologie grammaticale par les linguistes et les didacticiens, son acquisition par les enseignants et son application pédagogique doivent être ancrées dans une prise en compte de la terminologie lexicale. Par « terminologie lexicale », nous n'entendons pas simplement celle mise en œuvre dans l'enseignement du vocabulaire, vu en tant que « liste de mots », mais bien celle qui est nécessaire pour l'étude de toutes les propriétés fondamentales des unités lexicales : sens, forme et combinatoire (Polguère 2008). Cette vision lexicaliste de la terminologie grammaticale permet de mieux structurer le système notionnel impliqué dans l'enseignement de la grammaire. Dans un second temps, nous montrerons que des ressources spécifiques peuvent être construites pour mettre en œuvre cette interface terminologique et notionnelle entre grammaire et lexique, en nous appuyant sur l'exemple de l'ontologie linguistique baptisée Gros Tas de Notions (GTN). Nous verrons qu'une approche unifiée de la terminologie linguistique fondée sur une véritable structuration notionnelle permet de gérer de façon harmonieuse la cohabitation entre notions relevant du domaine lexical, utilisées en enseignement du vocabulaire (Tremblay 2009), et notions grammaticales (sémantiques, syntaxiques et morphologiques). Nous verrons également qu'il est possible, dans le contexte de la modélisation ontologique des notions linguistiques, de rendre compte de deux types de diversités terminologiques : la diversité interlangue et la diversité selon le domaine d'application.
Article
As intelligent tutoring system (ITS) issues are investigated and intelligent tutoring systems are developed, evaluation methodology becomes important. Basic researchers, system developers, and educators working with ITS all have motives for becoming involved in ITS evaluation. In formative evaluation, researchers examine a system under development, to identify problems and guide modifications. By contrast, summative evaluation is carried out to support formal claims about the construction, behaviour of, or outcomes associated with a completed system. Different methodologies are suitable for different types of evaluation, some focusing on internal considerations, such as architecture and behaviour, others on external considerations, such as educational impact. This paper draws upon the areas of intelligent tutoring systems research, expert systems design, computer-based instruction, education, and psychology to identify techniques for the formative and summative evaluation of ITS. Evalu...
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