Cognitive Prosthetics for Fostering Learning: A View from the Learning Sciences

  • Janet L. Kolodner The Concord Consortium


This article is aimed at helping AI researchers and practitioners imagine roles intelligent technologies might play in the many different and varied ecosystems in which people learn. My observations are based on learning sciences research of the past several decades, the possibilities of new technologies of the past few years, and my experience as program officer for the National Science Foundation’s Cyberlearning and Future Learning Technologies program. My thesis is that new technologies have potential to transform possibilities for fostering learning in both formal and informal learning environments by making it possible and manageable for learners to engage in the kinds of project work that professionals engage in and learn important content, skills, practices, habits, and dispositions from those experiences. The expertise of AI researchers and practitioners is critical to that vision, but it will require teaming up with others — for example, technology imagineers, educators, and learning scientists.