What Is Adaptive Learning and How Does It Work?
And with the COVID-19 pandemic now pushing all learning activities online, more and more L&D programs are being developed to enhance learning in a virtual environment. Most of these programs are adaptive and employ sophisticated AI technologies.
If you have ever been involved in online learning, you probably have heard of “adaptive learning” as it’s quite popular. Gartner named it, “The number one strategic technology that will impact future education” twice in a row—in 2015 and 2016.
So what exactly is adaptive learning, and how does it work? This article will expound on this subject and provide a case use of its practical application.
What Is Adaptive Learning?
Adaptive learning is the delivery of personalized learning experiences that address the unique needs of individuals through customized content, real-time feedback, and resources (rather than providing a standard learning experience for all).
In other words, adaptive learning is a teaching method that adapts to the confidence as well as the understanding of each learner.
Consider a standard online learning course that has questions and answers. In regular learning, users log in to the Learning Management Software (LMS), go through the course, and take the tests that follow the concepts.
If learners answer the questions correctly, they are prompted to go to the next page/course. If they fail the tests, they’re prompted to retake the test. In a standard learning path, all registered learners will go through the same experience.
Adaptive learning, on the other hand, doesn’t follow a standard (one-size-fits-all) flow. It seeks to provide a unique yet personalized experience for each user. In an adaptive learning path, learners may start with the same content, but based on their answers, the system will feed each user with relevant and unique content to master certain areas.
Today, many programs, including LSAT preparation courses, are adopting adaptive learning to increase their effectiveness. So whether you want to pick the right LSAT tutor or preparation courses, be sure to go for the one that adapts to your skill level.
How Does Adaptive Learning Work?
Most adaptive learning programs start with assessing the learners’ knowledge base. This helps to gauge the user’s understanding of the subject and determine where the training should focus on.
Here’s an example of how adaptive learning works.
Ha-Yoon is a 6th-grade student at a school in Seoul, South Korea. She writes a composition about an unforgettable holiday vacation and submits the assignment through an online education system. The program runs the essay for errors and provides lessons based on its assessment of Ha-Yoon’s English writing skills.
In the event the program identifies several subject/verb agreement mistakes in Ha-Yoon’s essay, it may provide her with more information on the topic. This way, it helps to make her a better writer by identifying mistakes and providing content that will polish her writing in those areas.
Adaptive learning excels over standard learning methods because it understands the students’ needs, thus providing relevant learning resources and experience.
This mode of learning has also been proved to produce a better outcome on all levels. In one study conducted by Colorado Technical University, researchers discovered a 27% increase in pass rate in the accounting course that employed adaptive learning.
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