Loughborough University
Thesis-2011-Saad.pdf (5.59 MB)

A case-based system for lesson plan construction

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posted on 2011-09-12, 11:04 authored by Aslina Saad
Planning for teaching imposes a significant burden on teachers, as teachers need to prepare different lesson plans for different classes according to various constraints. Statistical evidence shows that lesson planning in the Malaysian context is done in isolation and lesson plan sharing is limited. The purpose of this thesis is to investigate whether a case-based system can reduce the time teachers spend on constructing lesson plans. A case-based system was designed SmartLP. In this system, a case consists of a problem description and solution pair and an attributevalue representation for the case is used. SmartLP is a synthesis type of CBR system which attempts to create a new solution by combining parts of previous solutions in the adaptation. Five activities in the CBR cycle retrieve, reuse, revise, review and retain are created via three types of design: application, architectural and user interface. The inputs are the requirements and constraints of the curriculum and the student facilities available, and the output is the solution, i.e. appropriate elements of a lesson plan. The retrieval module consists of five types of search advanced search, hierarchical, Boolean, basic and browsing. Solving a problem in this system involves obtaining a problem description, measuring the similarity of the current problem to previous problems stored in a database, retrieving one or more similar cases and attempting to reuse the solution of the retrieved cases, possibly after adaptation. Case adaptation for multiple lesson plans helps teachers to customise the retrieved plan to suit their constraints. This is followed by case revision, which allows users to access and revise their constructed lesson plans in the system. Validation mechanisms, through case verification, ensure that the retained cases are of quality. A formative study was conducted to investigate the effects of SmartLP on performance. The study revealed that all the lesson plans constructed with SmartLP assistance took significantly less time than the control lesson plans constructed without SmartLP assistance, although they might have access to computers and other tools. No significant difference in writing quality, measured by a scoring system, was noticed for the control group, who constructed lesson plans on the same tasks without receiving any assistance. The limitations of SmartLP are indicated and the focus of further research is proposed. Keywords: Case-based system, CBR approach, knowledge acquisition, knowledge representation, case representation, evaluation, lesson planning.



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© Aslina Saad

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A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.

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  • en