Professor Erin Ottmar is a cognitive psychologist who is interested in how students learn and how technology can be used to make teaching and learning more effective. Based on her studies, she develops, designs, and tests innovative classroom interventions, like Graspable Math, that respond to the way students actually think and how they naturally approach problem solving. Teachers and students use the information to improve many aspects of classroom learning.
WPI researchers in learning sciences are pioneering educational technologies that have the power to revolutionize the nation’s education system. Faculty and student researchers combine sophisticated computational methodology with strong theoretical frameworks in the learning and social sciences to investigate topics such as instructional technologies, learning with visualizations and simulations, learner characteristics, human-computer interaction, and machine learning. The end goal is to improve learning in real time to keep America competitive.
Two separate multimillion dollar grants have been awarded to education researchers studying the impact of ASSISTments, a free web-based learning platform developed at WPI that was previously shown to boost student scores on standardized math tests by approximately 75 percent. The grants will build upon the prior trial to provide a “deeper dive” on ASSISTments.
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