Towards Student-Centric AI-Supported Learning: Teaching Chatbots to Ask the Right Questions

Authors: Favero, L. A. , Pérez-Ortiz, J. A. , Käser, T. , Oliver, N.

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Publication: Collaborative AI and Modeling of Humans, AAAI Bridge Program, 2024

LLM-based chatbots have the potential to profoundly transform education by providing instant and personalized responses to queries on a broad set of topics. However, essential aspects of human learning -such as critical thinking and the development of meta-cognition- remain elusive from today’s chatbots. In this paper, we propose Maike a novel educational chatbot designed to engage students in Socratic dialogues by asking questions rather than providing immediate answers. With a grounding on educational psychology theories, this approach promotes critical thinking, purposeful learning, and self-efficacy. Maike includes a Reinforcement Learning-based content planner to personalize the student’s learning path, which is dynamically updated based on their responses to Socratic prompts generated by an LLM. The goal is to improve learning outcomes through enhanced motivation and active learning. Maike has the potential to improve educational experiences via self-regulation and dynamic adaptation, particularly in online and remote learning environments.