1st Workshop on Artificial Intelligence in Education to
Support the Social Inclusion of Communities (AIEDSIC)

June 28, 2011, Auckland, New Zealand

In conjunction with the
15th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Education (AIED'2011)
June 28 - July 1st, 2011, Auckland, New Zealand

Workshop Papers Workshop Program Workshop Description Paper Submission Important Dates

About 20 years ago, in a paper entitled "Computational Mathetics: the Missing Link of Artificial Intelligence in Education", John Self argued that AI in Education has missed its connection with formal AI, its theoretical side. Some people argued that this was necessary so that AI in Education (AIED) could be able to deliver real world applications. However, in the real world, half of the population lives with less then 3 dollars a day with many socially excluded from education, health and other basic services. Social inclusion seeks to address the needs of this population, mostly living in underdeveloped countries, and also combat factors that are socially problematic in developed countries such as poor educational attainment, unemployment, poor health/special needs, low income, crime and poor housing/local environment.

The Artificial Intelligence in Education community has spent more than 30 years researching the design of adaptive technologies to support learning. However, the issue of supporting social inclusion has never been directly addressed. Has AI in Education also missed an important connection with the real world?

We argue that AI in Education systems have a challenging role to play in helping to transform communities but we also accept that much has to be done to establish the ways in which work on AI in Education supports such activities indirectly, and to determine what future work needs to be done.

The European Union made 2010 the European Year For Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion. The key objectives were to improve public awareness and commitment at the political level to fight poverty and social exclusion while some key challenges are:

We can start by focusing on AIED's capacity to support these aims. Therefore, the main purpose of this First Workshop on Artificial Intelligence in Education to Support the Social Inclusion of Communities (AIEDSIC) is to identify and discuss the challenges that arise in addressing issues of supporting the social inclusion of communities in the context of AI in Education research and lay the groundwork for future workshops in this area.

Intended Audience:

Researchers from the interdisciplinary fields of community informatics and artificial intelligence in education, particularly those concerned with addressing issues of social inclusion of communities in their research and also those that are concerned with incorporating adaptive learning technologies in real context applications. The workshop will be of interest to people working in all areas of AIED research and to those interested in analysing the nature of social inclusion problems and the ways they can be addressed by adaptive learning technologies. Communities that should be particularly interested are: those researching the use of adaptive systems for children with special needs (i.e. those with cognitive, affective, social or behavioural problems); those working on social aspects of Web 2.0; those looking at social factors in the use of CSCL; those working with second language learners; those working on the "digital divide".

Format and Activities:

As the proposal involves the formation of a workshop series in an area that is not well understood, the structure of the workshop will need to be kept fluid. The plan is that the workshop should be strongly interactive and exploratory of the field focused on the presentation of position papers followed by discussion.

Presentations and discussions will be oriented to explore opportunities to connect work from the areas of social inclusion of communities and adaptive learning technologies. The aim is to produce a research agenda on AI in Education to support the social inclusion of communities outlining a research plan to advance research in this area.

A keynote speaker will be invited to present their vision for future research. The workshop will consist of a mixture of position paper presentations from researchers and in-depth discussions.


Fabio Akhras
Renato Archer Center of Information Technology - CTI, Brazil
E-mail: fabio.akhras@cti.gov.br

Paul Brna
University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom
E-mail: paulbrna@mac.com

Program Committee:

Robert Aiken (Temple University, USA)
Fabio Akhras (Renato Archer Center of Information Technology - CTI, Brazil) (co-chair)
Paul Brna (University of Edinburgh, UK) (co-chair)
Matthew Easterday (Northwestern University, USA) (co-chair)
Nicolas Van Labeke (University of Nottingham, UK)
Rose Luckin (Institute of Education, UK)
Rafael Morales (University of Guadalajara, Mexico)
Jack Mostow (Carnegie Mellon University, USA)
Gilda Olinto (Brazilian Institute of Information on Science and Technology, IBICT, Brazil)
Natasha Queiroz (Federal University of Paraiba, UFPB, Brazil)