Seventh International School On Mind, Brain And Education

2012 July 30 - August 4

Teaching: A New Frontier
of the Neurocognitive
Sciences, Education
and Culture

Directors: Antonio M. Battro and Kurt W. Fischer
Program officer: María Lourdes Majdalani

Abstract: Clara Milazzo
Università degli Studi di Perugia, Facoltà di Lettere e Filosofia. ITALY

Explorations in foreign language teaching systems: using Artificial Intelligence for educational purposes
Over the last few years of the 20th century, in the process of second language teaching evolution something has changed. The adoption of technologies like email, Internet and the World Wide Web in the classroom has highly increased. Computers and artificial intelligence have been proposed as tools to facilitate student's second language learning. In the educational environment, the computer would have the role of both the tutor and the teacher who manages the learning process and the one who is directed by the student’s interests respectively. Artificial Intelligence would allow students to practice the language skills of writing and speaking providing individualized feedback and correction. The students, on the one hand, would be free to work in their own space and time, exploring those aspects of personal interest by selecting the most efficient learning strategy, and receiving highly individualized feedback. On the other hand, what a language teacher wants is an easily modifiable tool, something dynamic that can be modulated often and easily.
Therefore, it is believed that Artificial Intelligence in second language teaching will be really effective, especially when it deals with learner errors: an artificial intelligence error correction system would be helpful to second language learning. Artificial intelligence triumphantly approaches language components, in particular those that second language students appear to have problems with. However, the favorable outcomes of the computer in the tutorial role hangs on how reliably the artificial intelligence programs handle the student’s learning and on how accurate and appropriate is the feedback.