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An e-learning recommender that helps learners find the right materials.

Mbipo, Blessing; Massie, Stewart; Craw, Susan


Blessing Mbipo


Shlomo Zilberstein

Sheila McIlraith

Kilian Weinberger

G. Michael Youngblood

Karen Myers

Eric Eaton

Michael Wollowski


Learning materials are increasingly available on the Web making them an excellent source of information for building e-Learning recommendation systems. However, learners often have difficulty finding the right materials to support their learning goals because they lack sufficient domain knowledge to craft effective queries that convey what they wish to learn. The unfamiliar vocabulary often used by domain experts creates a semantic gap between learners and experts, and also makes it difficult to map a learner's query to relevant learning materials. We build an e-Learning recommender system that uses background knowledge extracted from a collection of teaching materials and encyclopedia sources to support the refinement of learners' queries. Our approach allows us to bridge the gap between learners and teaching experts. We evaluate our method using a collection of realistic learner queries and a dataset of Machine Learning and Data Mining documents. Evaluation results show our method to outperform benchmark approaches and demonstrates its effectiveness in assisting learners to find the right materials.


MBIPO, B., MASSIE, S. and CRAW, S. 2018. An e-learning recommender that helps learners find the right materials. In Zilberstein, S., McIlraith, S., Weinberger, K., Youngblood, G.M., Myers, K., Eaton, E. and Wollowski, M. (eds.) Proceedings of the 32nd Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) Artificial intelligence conference (AAAI18), co-located with the 30th Innovative applications of artificial intelligence conference (IAAI18) and the 8th AAAI Educational advances in artificial intelligence (EAAI-18), 2-7 February 2018, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. Palo Alto: AAAI Press [online], pages 7928-7933. Available from:

Conference Name 8th Symposium on educational advances in artificial intelligence (EAAI-18)
Conference Location New Orleans, USA
Start Date Feb 3, 2018
End Date Feb 4, 2018
Acceptance Date Nov 9, 2017
Online Publication Date Feb 3, 2018
Publication Date Apr 27, 2018
Deposit Date Dec 7, 2017
Publicly Available Date Dec 7, 2017
Print ISSN 2159-5399
Publisher Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence
Pages 7928-7933
Series ISSN 2159-5399
ISBN 9781577358008
Keywords Learning materials; eLearning; Teaching experts; Knowledge searching
Public URL
Publisher URL


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