Academic journal article Interdisciplinary Journal of e-Skills and Lifelong Learning

A Data Mining Approach to Improve Re-Accessibility and Delivery of Learning Knowledge Objects

Academic journal article Interdisciplinary Journal of e-Skills and Lifelong Learning

A Data Mining Approach to Improve Re-Accessibility and Delivery of Learning Knowledge Objects

Article excerpt


The learning environment is making a paradigm shift with e-learning technology by providing learners with webbased dynamic interfaces, through which learners can access appropriate content. Learning Management Systems (LMS), Content Management Systems (CMS), Virtual Learning Environments (VLE) and Knowledge Management Systems (KMS) are tools used to design such an environment. Learning Objects (LO) and Knowledge Objects (KO) are some of the basic building blocks of LMS and KMS respectively. For better management of learning, other instructional characteristics, such as learning objectives, strategy, and assessment, can be attached to these objects whilst they are being delivered.

It is a prime objective that when a LO or KO is delivered to a learner, it should be clearly signposted and should be worthy and consistent with the goals of the curriculum and appropriate for the given level of learner according to the learner's pedagogical need. The learner needs to understand the content given and should be given an opportunity to use it to solve complex real world problems. Different learners have different needs based on their learning styles and learning approaches (Entwistle, 1998; Felder & Brent, 2005; Keefe, 1979). An individual learner has a different interpretation, relation, and response to learning material, which arise because of different aptitude, intelligence, age, gender, attitude, and motivation.

Based on the knowledge attained by learners, their learning approaches can be divided into three categories. The first kind of learners adopts a surface approach by memorizing facts; the second kind of learners takes a deeper approach and does not simply rely on memorization of the course material but focuses on understanding it. The third group of learners adopts a strategic approach, is well organized and is efficient in their learning (Felder & Brent, 2005). Many advanced learners fall into the third category, in that they follow a surface approach by learning superficially, but, if the need arises they may follow a deeper approach (Lublin, 2003). In a wider range of situations and learning environments, different learning orientations may be adopted (Entwistle 1998). Classification of Learning Objects according to the learning style of potential users, based on profile and experiences, may provide better learning results (Mustaro & Silveira, 2006).

An enhanced LO called a Learning Knowledge Object has already been proposed, for improved learning, which uses the K-Nearest Neighbour approach (Sabitha, Mehrotra, & Bansal, 2014a) and an agglomerative clustering technique (Sabitha, Mehrotra, & Bansal, 2014b). The aim of these is to produce more consistent objects with coherent topic coverage that will satisfy various kinds of learners. An algorithm called the Shared Density Approach, which allows sharing of relevant objects among the clusters, is used in the approach adopted in this paper. This approach not only encompasses the delivery of an object, but also shows how they can be used under various learning categories. Simple clustering techniques find relevant objects in a single cluster and may lose some similar objects as they belong to different clusters thereby reducing its visibility. Each object belongs to only one cluster and an object which happens to be relatively close to another object but belongs to a different cluster can also be accessed using the Shared Neighbor Technique, thus increasing the usage of objects. This approach is more helpful when we use LKO, since KO can now be attached to a greater number of LOs, thereby increasing the re-accessibility of these objects for different user queries.

Literature Survey

An LMS is a high-level strategic solution for planning, delivering, and managing all learning events within an organization, which includes creation of online content, instructor led courses, and a portal for collaborative learning (L. …

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