Thursday, July 16, 2009

Robots Could Replace Teachers

Research at the University of Washington Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences shows that infants can learn foreign speech sounds when they interact with a live human being in a social setting. But infants under 1-year-old do not seem to learn language when they are read to over TV. The children stare at the TV and even point to it. They seem visually attentive to the images that flow past, but learn no language. Scientists think that social interaction with a live human being is crucial for learning to take place in children under 1 year. Credit: University of Washington Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences.

From Live Science:

In the future, more and more of us will learn from social robots, especially kids learning pre-school skills and students of all ages studying a new language.

This is just one of the scenarios sketched in a review essay that looks at a "new science of learning," which brings together recent findings from the fields of psychology, neuroscience, machine learning and education.

The essay, published in the July 17 issue of the journal Science, outlines new insights into how humans learn now and could learn in the future, based on various studies including some that document the amazing amount of brain development that happens in infants and later on in childhood.

Read more ....

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