Learning

Learning is the process of acquiring new, or modifying existing, knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, or preferences.[1] The ability to learn is possessed by humans, animals, and some machines; there is also evidence for some kind of learning in some plants.[2] Some learning is immediate, induced by a single event (e.g. being burned by a hot stove), but much skill and knowledge accumulates from repeated experiences. The changes induced by learning often last a lifetime, and it is hard to distinguish learned material that seems to be "lost" from that which cannot be retrieved.[3]

Human learning begins before birth and continues until death as a consequence of ongoing interactions between person and environment. The nature and processes involved in learning are studied in many fields, including educational psychology, neuropsychology, experimental psychology, and pedagogy. Research in such fields has led to the identification of various sorts of learning. For example, learning may occur as a result of habituation, or classical conditioning, operant conditioning or as a result of more complex activities such as play, seen only in relatively intelligent animals.[4][5] Learning may occur consciously or without conscious awareness. Learning that an aversive event can't be avoided nor escaped may result in a condition called learned helplessness.[6] There is evidence for human behavioral learning prenatally, in which habituation has been observed as early as 32 weeks into gestation, indicating that the central nervous system is sufficiently developed and primed for learning and memory to occur very early on in development.[7]

Play has been approached by several theorists as the first form of learning. Children experiment with the world, learn the rules, and learn to interact through play. Lev Vygotsky agrees that play is pivotal for children's development, since they make meaning of their environment through playing educational games.

Types

Non-associative learning

Non-associative learning refers to "a relatively permanent change in the strength of response to a single stimulus due to repeated exposure to that stimulus. Changes due to such factors as sensory adaptation, fatigue, or injury do not qualify as non-associative learning."[8]

Non-associative learning can be divided into habituation and sensitization.

Habituation

Habituation is an example of non-associative learning in which the strength or probability of a response diminishes when the stimulus is repeated. The response is typically a reflex or unconditioned response. Thus, habituation must be distinguished from extinction, which is an associative process. In operant extinction, for example, a response declines because it is no longer followed by a reward. An example of habituation can be seen in small song birds—if a stuffed owl (or similar predator) is put into the cage, the birds initially react to it as though it were a real predator. Soon the birds react less, showing habituation. If another stuffed owl is introduced (or the same one removed and re-introduced), the birds react to it again as though it were a predator, demonstrating that it is only a very specific stimulus that is habituated to (namely, one particular unmoving owl in one place). The habituation process is faster for stimuli that occur at a high rather than for stimuli that occur at a low rate as well as for the weak and strong stimuli, respectively.[9] Habituation has been shown in essentially every species of animal, as well as the sensitive plant Mimosa pudica[10] and the large protozoan Stentor coeruleus.[11] This concept acts in direct opposition to sensitization.[9]

Sensitization

Sensitization is an example of non-associative learning in which the progressive amplification of a response follows repeated administrations of a stimulus (Bell et al., 1995). This is based on the notion that a defensive reflex to a stimulus such as withdrawal or escape becomes stronger after the exposure to a different harmful or threatening stimulus.[12] An everyday example of this mechanism is the repeated tonic stimulation of peripheral nerves that occurs if a person rubs their arm continuously. After a while, this stimulation creates a warm sensation that eventually turns painful. The pain results from the progressively amplified synaptic response of the peripheral nerves warning that the stimulation is harmful. Sensitisation is thought to underlie both adaptive as well as maladaptive learning processes in the organism.

Active learning

Learning Retention Pyramid
Experiential learning is more efficient than passive learning like reading or listening.[13]

Active learning occurs when a person takes control of his/her learning experience. Since understanding information is the key aspect of learning, it is important for learners to recognize what they understand and what they do not. By doing so, they can monitor their own mastery of subjects. Active learning encourages learners to have an internal dialogue in which they verbalize understandings. This and other meta-cognitive strategies can be taught to a child over time. Studies within metacognition have proven the value in active learning, claiming that the learning is usually at a stronger level as a result.[14] In addition, learners have more incentive to learn when they have control over not only how they learn but also what they learn.[15] Active learning is a key characteristic of student-centered learning. Conversely, passive learning and direct instruction are characteristics of teacher-centered learning (or traditional education).

The research works on the human learning process as a complex adaptive system developed by Peter Belohlavek showed that it is the concept that the individual has that drives the accommodation process to assimilate new knowledge in the long-term memory, defining learning as an intrinsically freedom-oriented and active process.[16] As a student-centered learning approach, the unicist reflection driven learning installs adaptive knowledge objects in the mind of the learner based on a cyclic process of: “action-reflection-action” to foster an adaptive behavior.[17][18]

Associative learning

Associative learning is the process by which a person or animal learns an association between two stimuli or events.[19] In classical conditioning a previously neutral stimulus is repeatedly paired with a reflex eliciting stimulus until eventually the neutral stimulus elicits a response on its own. In operant conditioning, a behavior that is reinforced or punished in the presence of a stimulus becomes more or less likely to occur in the presence of that stimulus.

Operant conditioning

In operant conditioning, a reinforcement (by reward) or instead a punishment given after a given behavior, change the frequency and/or form of that behavior. Stimulus present when the behavior/consequence occurs come to control these behavior modifications.

Classical conditioning

The typical paradigm for classical conditioning involves repeatedly pairing an unconditioned stimulus (which unfailingly evokes a reflexive response) with another previously neutral stimulus (which does not normally evoke the response). Following conditioning, the response occurs both to the unconditioned stimulus and to the other, unrelated stimulus (now referred to as the "conditioned stimulus"). The response to the conditioned stimulus is termed a conditioned response. The classic example is Ivan Pavlov and his dogs.[12] Pavlov fed his dogs meat powder, which naturally made the dogs salivate—salivating is a reflexive response to the meat powder. Meat powder is the unconditioned stimulus (US) and the salivation is the unconditioned response (UR). Pavlov rang a bell before presenting the meat powder. The first time Pavlov rang the bell, the neutral stimulus, the dogs did not salivate, but once he put the meat powder in their mouths they began to salivate. After numerous pairings of bell and food, the dogs learned that the bell signaled that food was about to come, and began to salivate when they heard the bell. Once this occurred, the bell became the conditioned stimulus (CS) and the salivation to the bell became the conditioned response (CR). Classical conditioning has been demonstrated in many species. For example, it is seen in honeybees, in the proboscis extension reflex paradigm.[20] It was recently also demonstrated in garden pea plants.[21]

Another influential person in the world of classical conditioning is John B. Watson. Watson's work was very influential and paved the way for B.F. Skinner's radical behaviorism. Watson's behaviorism (and philosophy of science) stood in direct contrast to Freud and other accounts based largely on introspection. Watson's view was that the introspective method was too subjective, and that we should limit the study of human development to directly observable behaviors. In 1913, Watson published the article "Psychology as the Behaviorist Views," in which he argued that laboratory studies should serve psychology best as a science. Watson's most famous, and controversial, experiment, "Little Albert", where he demonstrated how psychologists can account for the learning of emotion through classical conditioning principles.

Observational learning

Observational learning is learning that occurs through observing the behavior of others. It is a form of social learning which takes various forms, based on various processes. In humans, this form of learning seems to not need reinforcement to occur, but instead, requires a social model such as a parent, sibling, friend, or teacher with surroundings.

Imprinting

Imprinting is a kind of learning occurring at a particular life stage that is rapid and apparently independent of the consequences of behavior. In filial imprinting, young animals, particularly birds, form an association with another individual or in some cases, an object, that they respond to as they would to a parent. In 1935, the Austrian Zoologist Konrad Lorenz discovered that certain birds follow and form a bond if the object makes sounds.

Play

Play generally describes behavior with no particular end in itself, but that improves performance in similar future situations. This is seen in a wide variety of vertebrates besides humans, but is mostly limited to mammals and birds. Cats are known to play with a ball of string when young, which gives them experience with catching prey. Besides inanimate objects, animals may play with other members of their own species or other animals, such as orcas playing with seals they have caught. Play involves a significant cost to animals, such as increased vulnerability to predators and the risk of injury and possibly infection. It also consumes energy, so there must be significant benefits associated with play for it to have evolved. Play is generally seen in younger animals, suggesting a link with learning. However, it may also have other benefits not associated directly with learning, for example improving physical fitness.

Play, as it pertains to humans as a form of learning is central to a child's learning and development. Through play, children learn social skills such as sharing and collaboration. Children develop emotional skills such as learning to deal with the emotion of anger, through play activities. As a form of learning, play also facilitates the development of thinking and language skills in children.[22]

There are five types of play:

  1. sensorimotor play aka functional play, characterized by repetition of activity
  2. role play occurs starting at the age of 3
  3. rule-based play where authoritative prescribed codes of conduct are primary
  4. construction play involves experimentation and building
  5. movement play aka physical play[22]

These five types of play are often intersecting. All types of play generate thinking and problem-solving skills in children. Children learn to think creatively when they learn through play.[23] Specific activities involved in each type of play change over time as humans progress through the lifespan. Play as a form of learning, can occur solitarily, or involve interacting with others.

Enculturation

Enculturation is the process by which people learn values and behaviors that are appropriate or necessary in their surrounding culture.[24] Parents, other adults, and peers shape the individual's understanding of these values.[24] If successful, enculturation results in competence in the language, values and rituals of the culture.[24] This is different from acculturation, where a person adopts the values and societal rules of a culture different from their native one.

Multiple examples of enculturation can be found cross-culturally. Collaborative practices in the Mazahua people have shown that participation in everyday interaction and later learning activities contributed to enculturation rooted in nonverbal social experience.[25] As the children participated in everyday activities, they learned the cultural significance of these interactions. The collaborative and helpful behaviors exhibited by Mexican and Mexican-heritage children is a cultural practice known as being "acomedido".[26] Chillihuani girls in Peru described themselves as weaving constantly, following behavior shown by the other adults.[27]

Episodic learning

Episodic learning is a change in behavior that occurs as a result of an event.[28] For example, a fear of dogs that follows being bitten by a dog is episodic learning. Episodic learning is so named because events are recorded into episodic memory, which is one of the three forms of explicit learning and retrieval, along with perceptual memory and semantic memory.[29] Episodic memory remembers events and history that are embedded in experience and this is distinguished from semantic memory, which attempts to extract facts out of their experiential context[30] or – as some describe – a timeless organization of knowledge.[31] For instance, if a person remembers the Grand Canyon from a recent visit, it is an episodic memory. He would use semantic memory to answer someone who would ask him information such as where the Grand Canyon is. A study revealed that humans are very accurate in the recognition of episodic memory even without deliberate intention to memorize it.[32] This is said to indicate a very large storage capacity of the brain for things that people pay attention to.[32]

Multimedia learning

Multimedia learning is where a person uses both auditory and visual stimuli to learn information (Mayer 2001). This type of learning relies on dual-coding theory (Paivio 1971).

E-learning and augmented learning

Electronic learning or e-learning is computer-enhanced learning. A specific and always more diffused e-learning is mobile learning (m-learning), which uses different mobile telecommunication equipment, such as cellular phones.

When a learner interacts with the e-learning environment, it's called augmented learning. By adapting to the needs of individuals, the context-driven instruction can be dynamically tailored to the learner's natural environment. Augmented digital content may include text, images, video, audio (music and voice). By personalizing instruction, augmented learning has been shown to improve learning performance for a lifetime.[33] See also minimally invasive education.

Moore (1989)[34] purported that three core types of interaction are necessary for quality, effective online learning:

  • learner–learner (i.e. communication between and among peers with or without the teacher present),
  • learner–instructor (i.e. student teacher communication), and
  • learner–content (i.e. intellectually interacting with content that results in changes in learners' understanding, perceptions, and cognitive structures).

In his theory of transactional distance, Moore (1993)[35] contented that structure and interaction or dialogue bridge the gap in understanding and communication that is created by geographical distances (known as transactional distance).

Rote learning

Rote learning is memorizing information so that it can be recalled by the learner exactly the way it was read or heard. The major technique used for rote learning is learning by repetition, based on the idea that a learner can recall the material exactly (but not its meaning) if the information is repeatedly processed. Rote learning is used in diverse areas, from mathematics to music to religion. Although it has been criticized by some educators, rote learning is a necessary precursor to meaningful learning.

Meaningful learning

Meaningful learning is the concept that learned knowledge (e.g., a fact) is fully understood to the extent that it relates to other knowledge. To this end, meaningful learning contrasts with rote learning in which information is acquired without regard to understanding. Meaningful learning, on the other hand, implies there is a comprehensive knowledge of the context of the facts learned.[36]

Informal learning

Informal learning occurs through the experience of day-to-day situations (for example, one would learn to look ahead while walking because of the danger inherent in not paying attention to where one is going). It is learning from life, during a meal at table with parents, play, exploring, etc.

Formal learning

Laurentius de Voltolina 001
A depiction of the world's oldest continually operating university, the University of Bologna, Italy

Formal learning is learning that takes place within a teacher-student relationship, such as in a school system. The term formal learning has nothing to do with the formality of the learning, but rather the way it is directed and organized. In formal learning, the learning or training departments set out the goals and objectives of the learning.[37]

Nonformal learning

Nonformal learning is organized learning outside the formal learning system. For example, learning by coming together with people with similar interests and exchanging viewpoints, in clubs or in (international) youth organizations, workshops.

Nonformal learning and combined approaches

The educational system may use a combination of formal, informal, and nonformal learning methods. The UN and EU recognize these different forms of learning (cf. links below). In some schools, students can get points that count in the formal-learning systems if they get work done in informal-learning circuits. They may be given time to assist international youth workshops and training courses, on the condition they prepare, contribute, share and can prove this offered valuable new insight, helped to acquire new skills, a place to get experience in organizing, teaching, etc.

To learn a skill, such as solving a Rubik's Cube quickly, several factors come into play at once:

  • Reading directions helps a player learn the patterns that solve the Rubik's Cube.
  • Practicing the moves repeatedly helps build "muscle memory" and speed.
  • Thinking critically about moves helps find shortcuts, which speeds future attempts.
  • Observing the Rubik's Cube's six colors help anchor solutions in the mind.
  • Revisiting the cube occasionally helps retain the skill.

Tangential learning

Tangential learning is the process by which people self-educate if a topic is exposed to them in a context that they already enjoy. For example, after playing a music-based video game, some people may be motivated to learn how to play a real instrument, or after watching a TV show that references Faust and Lovecraft, some people may be inspired to read the original work.[38] Self-education can be improved with systematization. According to experts in natural learning, self-oriented learning training has proven an effective tool for assisting independent learners with the natural phases of learning.[39]

Extra Credits writer and game designer James Portnow was the first to suggest games as a potential venue for "tangential learning".[40] Mozelius et al.[41] points out that intrinsic integration of learning content seems to be a crucial design factor, and that games that include modules for further self-studies tend to present good results. The built-in encyclopedias in the Civilization games are presented as an example – by using these modules gamers can dig deeper for knowledge about historical events in the gameplay. The importance of rules that regulate learning modules and game experience is discussed by Moreno, C.,[42] in a case study about the mobile game Kiwaka (Q55416666). In this game, developed by Landka in collaboration with ESA and ESO,[43][44] game progress is rewarded with educational content, as opposed to traditional education games where learning activities are rewarded with gameplay.

Dialogic learning

Dialogic learning is a type of learning based on dialogue.

Incidental learning

In incidental teaching learning is not planned by the instructor or the student, it occurs as a byproduct of another activity — an experience, observation, self-reflection, interaction, unique event, or common routine task. This learning happens in addition to or apart from the instructor's plans and the student's expectations. An example of incidental teaching is when the instructor places a train set on top of a cabinet. If the child points or walks towards the cabinet, the instructor prompts the student to say “train.” Once the student says “train,” he gets access to the train set.

Here are some steps most commonly used in incidental teaching:[45]

  • An instructor will arrange the learning environment so that necessary materials are within the student's sight, but not within his reach, thus impacting his motivation to seek out those materials.
  • An instructor waits for the student to initiate engagement.
  • An instructor prompts the student to respond if needed.
  • An instructor allows access to an item/activity contingent on a correct response from the student.
  • The instructor fades out the prompting process over a period of time and subsequent trials.

Incidental learning is an occurrence that is not generally accounted for using the traditional methods of instructional objectives and outcomes assessment. This type of learning occurs in part as a product of social interaction and active involvement in both online and onsite courses. Research implies that some un-assessed aspects of onsite and online learning challenge the equivalency of education between the two modalities. Both onsite and online learning have distinct advantages with traditional on-campus students experiencing higher degrees of incidental learning in three times as many areas as online students. Additional research is called for to investigate the implications of these findings both conceptually and pedagogically.[46]

Domains

France in XXI Century. School
Future school (1901 or 1910)

Benjamin Bloom has suggested three domains of learning:

  • Cognitive: To recall, calculate, discuss, analyze, problem solve, etc.
  • Psychomotor: To dance, swim, ski, dive, drive a car, ride a bike, etc.
  • Affective: To like something or someone, love, appreciate, fear, hate, worship, etc.

These domains are not mutually exclusive. For example, in learning to play chess, the person must learn the rules (cognitive domain)—but must also learn how to set up the chess pieces and how to properly hold and move a chess piece (psychomotor). Furthermore, later in the game the person may even learn to love the game itself, value its applications in life, and appreciate its history (affective domain).[47]

Transfer

Transfer of learning is the application of skill, knowledge or understanding to resolve a novel problem or situation that happens when certain conditions are fulfilled. Research indicates that learning transfer is infrequent; most common when "... cued, primed, and guided..."[48] and has sought to clarify what it is, and how it might be promoted through instruction.

Over the history of its discourse, various hypotheses and definitions have been advanced. First, it is speculated that different types of transfer exist, including: near transfer, the application of skill to solve a novel problem in a similar context; and far transfer, the application of skill to solve novel problem presented in a different context.[49] Furthermore, Perkins and Salomon (1992) suggest that positive transfer in cases when learning supports novel problem solving, and negative transfer occurs when prior learning inhibits performance on highly correlated tasks, such as second or third-language learning.[50] Concepts of positive and negative transfer have a long history; researchers in the early 20th century described the possibility that "...habits or mental acts developed by a particular kind of training may inhibit rather than facilitate other mental activities".[51] Finally, Schwarz, Bransford and Sears (2005) have proposed that transferring knowledge into a situation may differ from transferring knowledge out to a situation as a means to reconcile findings that transfer may both be frequent and challenging to promote.[52]

A significant and long research history has also attempted to explicate the conditions under which transfer of learning might occur. Early research by Ruger, for example, found that the "level of attention", "attitudes", "method of attack" (or method for tackling a problem), a "search for new points of view", "a careful testing of hypothesis" and "generalization" were all valuable approaches for promoting transfer.[53] To encourage transfer through teaching, Perkins and Salomon recommend aligning ("hugging") instruction with practice and assessment, and "bridging", or encouraging learners to reflect on past experiences or make connections between prior knowledge and current content.[50]

Factors affecting learning

External factors

  1. Heredity: A classroom instructor can neither change nor increase heredity, but the student can use and develop it. Some learners are rich in hereditary endowment while others are poor. Each student is unique and has different abilities. The native intelligence is different in individuals. Heredity governs or conditions our ability to learn and the rate of learning. The intelligent learners can establish and see relationship very easily and more quickly.
  2. Status of students: Physical and home conditions also matter: Certain problems like malnutrition i.e.; inadequate supply of nutrients to the body, fatigue i.e.; tiredness, bodily weakness, and bad health are great obstructers in learning. These are some of the physical conditions by which a student can get affected. Home is a place where a family lives. If the home conditions are not proper, the student is affected seriously. Some of the home conditions are bad ventilation, unhygienic living, bad light, etc. These affect the student and his or her rate of learning.[54][55]
  3. Physical environment: The design, quality, and setting of a learning space, such as a school or classroom, can each be critical to the success of a learning environment. Size, configuration, comfort—fresh air, temperature, light, acoustics, furniture—can all affect a student's learning. The tools used by both instructors and students directly affect how information is conveyed, from display and writing surfaces (blackboards, markerboards, tack surfaces) to digital technologies. For example, if a room is too crowded, stress levels rise, student attention is reduced, and furniture arrangement is restricted. If furniture is incorrectly arranged, sight lines to the instructor or instructional material is limited and the ability to suit the learning or lesson style is restricted. Aesthetics can also play a role, for if student morale suffers, so does motivation to attend school.[56][57]

Internal factors

There are several internal factors that affect learning.[58][59] They are

  1. Goals or purposes: Each and everyone has a goal. A goal should be set to each pupil according to the standard expected to him. A goal is an aim or desired result. There are 2 types of goals called immediate and distant goals. A goal that occurs or is done at once is called an immediate goal, and distant goals are those that take time to achieve. Immediate goals should be set before the young learner and distant goals for older learners. Goals should be specific and clear, so that learners understand.
  2. Motivational behavior: Motivation means to provide with a motive. Motivation learners should be motivated so that they stimulate themselves with interest. This behavior arouses and regulates the student's internal energies.
  3. Interest: This is a quality that arouses a feeling. It encourages a student to move over tasks further. During teaching, the instructor must raise interests among students for the best learning. Interest is an apparent (clearly seen or understood) behaviour.
  4. Attention: Attention means consideration. It is concentration or focusing of consciousness upon one object or an idea. If effective learning should take place attention is essential. Instructors must secure the attention of the student.
  5. Drill or practice: This method includes repeating the tasks "n" number of times like needs, phrases, principles, etc. This makes learning more effective.
  6. Fatigue: Generally there are three types of fatigue, i.e., muscular, sensory, and mental. Muscular and sensory fatigues are bodily fatigue. Mental fatigue is in the central nervous system. The remedy is to change teaching methods, e.g., use audio-visual aids, etc.
  7. Aptitude: Aptitude is natural ability. It is a condition in which an individuals ability to acquire certain skills, knowledge through training.
  8. Attitude: It is a way of thinking. The attitude of the student must be tested to find out how much inclination he or she has for learning a subject or topic.
  9. Emotional conditions: Emotions are physiological states of being. Students who answer a question properly or give good results should be praised. This encouragement increases their ability and helps them produce better results. Certain attitudes, such as always finding fault in a student's answer or provoking or embarrassing the student in front of a class are counterproductive.
  10. Speed, Accuracy and retention: Speed is the rapidity of movement. Retention is the act of retaining. These 3 elements depend upon aptitude, attitude, interest, attention and motivation of the students.
  11. Learning activities: Learning depends upon the activities and experiences provided by the teacher, his concept of discipline, methods of teaching and above all his overall personality.
  12. Testing: Various tests measure individual learner differences at the heart of effective learning. Testing helps eliminate subjective elements of measuring pupil differences and performances.
  13. Guidance: Everyone needs guidance in some part or some time in life. Some need it constantly and some very rarely depending on the students conditions. Small learners need more guidance. Guidance is an advice to solve a problem. Guidance involves the art of helping boys and girls in various aspects of academics, improving vocational aspects like choosing careers and recreational aspects like choosing hobbies. Guidance covers the whole gamut of learners problems- learning as well as non- learning.

In animal evolution

Animals gain knowledge in two ways. First is learning—in which an animal gathers information about its environment and uses this information. For example, if an animal eats something that hurts its stomach, it learns not to eat that again. The second is innate knowledge that is genetically inherited. An example of this is when a horse is born and can immediately walk. The horse has not learned this behavior; it simply knows how to do it.[60] In some scenarios, innate knowledge is more beneficial than learned knowledge. However, in other scenarios the opposite is true—animals must learn certain behaviors when it is disadvantageous to have a specific innate behavior. In these situations, learning evolves in the species.

Costs and benefits of learned and innate knowledge

In a changing environment, an animal must constantly gain new information to survive. However, in a stable environment, this same individual needs to gather the information it needs once, and then rely on it for the rest of its life. Therefore, different scenarios better suit either learning or innate knowledge. Essentially, the cost of obtaining certain knowledge versus the benefit of already having it determines whether an animal evolved to learn in a given situation, or whether it innately knew the information. If the cost of gaining the knowledge outweighs the benefit of having it, then the animal does not evolve to learn in this scenario—but instead, non-learning evolves. However, if the benefit of having certain information outweighs the cost of obtaining it, then the animal is far more likely to evolve to have to learn this information.[60]

Non-learning is more likely to evolve in two scenarios. If an environment is static and change does not or rarely occurs, then learning is simply unnecessary. Because there is no need for learning in this scenario—and because learning could prove disadvantageous due to the time it took to learn the information—non-learning evolves. However, if an environment is in a constant state of change, then learning is disadvantageous. Anything learned is immediately irrelevant because of the changing environment.[60] The learned information no longer applies. Essentially, the animal would be just as successful if it took a guess as if it learned. In this situation, non-learning evolves. In fact, a study of Drosophila melanogaster showed that learning can actually lead to a decrease in productivity, possibly because egg-laying behaviors and decisions were impaired by interference from the memories gained from the new learned materials or because of the cost of energy in learning.[61]

However, in environments where change occurs within an animal's lifetime but is not constant, learning is more likely to evolve. Learning is beneficial in these scenarios because an animal can adapt to the new situation, but can still apply the knowledge that it learns for a somewhat extended period of time. Therefore, learning increases the chances of success as opposed to guessing.[60] An example of this is seen in aquatic environments with landscapes subject to change. In these environments, learning is favored because the fish are predisposed to learn the specific spatial cues where they live.[62]

Machine learning

Robots can learn to cooperate.

Machine learning, a branch of artificial intelligence, concerns the construction and study of systems that can learn from data. For example, a machine learning system could be trained on email messages to learn to distinguish between spam and non-spam messages.

See also

Information theory

Types of education

Notes

  1. ^ Richard Gross, Psychology: The Science of Mind and Behaviour 6E, Hachette UK, ISBN 978-1444164367.
  2. ^ Karban, R. (2015). Plant Learning and Memory. In: Plant Sensing and Communication. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, pp. 31–44, [1].
  3. ^ Daniel L. Schacter; Daniel T. Gilbert; Daniel M. Wegner (2011) [2009]. Psychology, 2nd edition. Worth Publishers. p. 264. ISBN 978-1429237192.
  4. ^ Jungle Gyms: The Evolution of Animal Play Archived 2007-10-11 at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ "What behavior can we expect of octopuses?". www.thecephalopodpage.org. The Cephalopod Page. Archived from the original on 5 October 2017. Retrieved 4 May 2018.
  6. ^ Learned helplessness at Encyclopædia Britannica
  7. ^ Sandman, Wadhwa; Hetrick, Porto; Peeke (1997). "Human fetal heart rate dishabituation between thirty and thirty-two weeks gestation". Child Development. 68 (6): 1031–1040. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.1997.tb01982.x.
  8. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2014-01-03. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
  9. ^ a b Pear, Joseph (2014). The Science of Learning. London: Psychology Press. p. 15. ISBN 978-1317762805.
  10. ^ Gagliano, M.; et al. (2014). "Experience teaches plants to learn faster and forget slower in environments where it matters". Oecologia. 175 (1): 63–72. Bibcode:2014Oecol.175...63G. doi:10.1007/s00442-013-2873-7. PMID 24390479.
  11. ^ Wood, D.C. (1988). "Habituation in Stentor produced by mechanoreceptor channel modification". Journal of Neuroscience. 2254: 8.
  12. ^ a b Galizia, Giovanni; Lledo, Pierre-Marie (2013). Neurosciences – From Molecule to Behavior. Heidelberg: Springer Spektrum. p. 578. ISBN 978-3642107689.
  13. ^ Igor Kokcharov, Ph.D, PMP (22 May 2015). "Hierarchy of Skills". slideshare.net. Archived from the original on 17 December 2016. Retrieved 4 May 2018.
  14. ^ Bransford, 2000, pp. 15–20
  15. ^ J. Scott Armstrong (2012). "Natural Learning in Higher Education". Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning. Archived from the original on 2014-09-16.
  16. ^ Ferro, María Laura (2003-01-05). "Teoría Unicista: Otra manera de aprender". Revista Nueva. Agrupación Diarios del Interior. pp. Nº 599, 10–12.
  17. ^ Caldas, Sérgio Túlio (1990-08-30). "Economista cria centro de estudo empresarial". O Estado de São Paulo. Economia. p. 9.
  18. ^ Belohlavek, Peter (2018-04-12). "Unicist Reflection Driven Learning for Superior Education". SSRN. Retrieved 2018-09-29.
  19. ^ Plotnik, Rod; Kouyomdijan, Haig (2012). Discovery Series: Introduction to Psychology. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning. p. 208. ISBN 978-1111347024.
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References

External links

Artificial intelligence

In computer science, artificial intelligence (AI), sometimes called machine intelligence, is intelligence demonstrated by machines, in contrast to the natural intelligence displayed by humans and other animals. Computer science defines AI research as the study of "intelligent agents": any device that perceives its environment and takes actions that maximize its chance of successfully achieving its goals. More in detail, Kaplan and Haenlein define AI as “a system’s ability to correctly interpret external data, to learn from such data, and to use those learnings to achieve specific goals and tasks through flexible adaptation”. Colloquially, the term "artificial intelligence" is applied when a machine mimics "cognitive" functions that humans associate with other human minds, such as "learning" and "problem solving".The scope of AI is disputed: as machines become increasingly capable, tasks considered as requiring "intelligence" are often removed from the definition, a phenomenon known as the AI effect, leading to the quip in Tesler's Theorem, "AI is whatever hasn't been done yet." For instance, optical character recognition is frequently excluded from "artificial intelligence", having become a routine technology. Modern machine capabilities generally classified as AI include successfully understanding human speech, competing at the highest level in strategic game systems (such as chess and Go), autonomously operating cars, and intelligent routing in content delivery networks and military simulations.

Borrowing from the management literature, Kaplan and Haenlein classify artificial intelligence into three different types of AI systems: analytical, human-inspired, and humanized artificial intelligence. Analytical AI has only characteristics consistent with cognitive intelligence generating cognitive representation of the world and using learning based on past experience to inform future decisions. Human-inspired AI has elements from cognitive as well as emotional intelligence, understanding, in addition to cognitive elements, also human emotions considering them in their decision making. Humanized AI shows characteristics of all types of competencies (i.e., cognitive, emotional, and social intelligence), able to be self-conscious and self-aware in interactions with others.

Artificial intelligence was founded as an academic discipline in 1956, and in the years since has experienced several waves of optimism, followed by disappointment and the loss of funding (known as an "AI winter"), followed by new approaches, success and renewed funding. For most of its history, AI research has been divided into subfields that often fail to communicate with each other. These sub-fields are based on technical considerations, such as particular goals (e.g. "robotics" or "machine learning"), the use of particular tools ("logic" or artificial neural networks), or deep philosophical differences. Subfields have also been based on social factors (particular institutions or the work of particular researchers).The traditional problems (or goals) of AI research include reasoning, knowledge representation, planning, learning, natural language processing, perception and the ability to move and manipulate objects. General intelligence is among the field's long-term goals. Approaches include statistical methods, computational intelligence, and traditional symbolic AI. Many tools are used in AI, including versions of search and mathematical optimization, artificial neural networks, and methods based on statistics, probability and economics. The AI field draws upon computer science, information engineering, mathematics, psychology, linguistics, philosophy, and many others.

The field was founded on the claim that human intelligence "can be so precisely described that a machine can be made to simulate it". This raises philosophical arguments about the nature of the mind and the ethics of creating artificial beings endowed with human-like intelligence which are issues that have been explored by myth, fiction and philosophy since antiquity. Some people also consider AI to be a danger to humanity if it progresses unabated. Others believe that AI, unlike previous technological revolutions, will create a risk of mass unemployment.In the twenty-first century, AI techniques have experienced a resurgence following concurrent advances in computer power, large amounts of data, and theoretical understanding; and AI techniques have become an essential part of the technology industry, helping to solve many challenging problems in computer science, software engineering and operations research.

Artificial neural network

Artificial neural networks (ANN) or connectionist systems are computing systems vaguely inspired by the biological neural networks that constitute animal brains. The neural network itself is not an algorithm, but rather a framework for many different machine learning algorithms to work together and process complex data inputs. Such systems "learn" to perform tasks by considering examples, generally without being programmed with any task-specific rules. For example, in image recognition, they might learn to identify images that contain cats by analyzing example images that have been manually labeled as "cat" or "no cat" and using the results to identify cats in other images. They do this without any prior knowledge about cats, for example, that they have fur, tails, whiskers and cat-like faces. Instead, they automatically generate identifying characteristics from the learning material that they process.

An ANN is based on a collection of connected units or nodes called artificial neurons, which loosely model the neurons in a biological brain. Each connection, like the synapses in a biological brain, can transmit a signal from one artificial neuron to another. An artificial neuron that receives a signal can process it and then signal additional artificial neurons connected to it.

In common ANN implementations, the signal at a connection between artificial neurons is a real number, and the output of each artificial neuron is computed by some non-linear function of the sum of its inputs. The connections between artificial neurons are called 'edges'. Artificial neurons and edges typically have a weight that adjusts as learning proceeds. The weight increases or decreases the strength of the signal at a connection. Artificial neurons may have a threshold such that the signal is only sent if the aggregate signal crosses that threshold. Typically, artificial neurons are aggregated into layers. Different layers may perform different kinds of transformations on their inputs. Signals travel from the first layer (the input layer), to the last layer (the output layer), possibly after traversing the layers multiple times.

The original goal of the ANN approach was to solve problems in the same way that a human brain would. However, over time, attention moved to performing specific tasks, leading to deviations from biology. Artificial neural networks have been used on a variety of tasks, including computer vision, speech recognition, machine translation, social network filtering, playing board and video games and medical diagnosis.

Autodidacticism

Autodidacticism (also autodidactism) or self-education (also self-learning and self-teaching) is education without the guidance of masters (such as teachers and professors) or institutions (such as schools). Generally, an autodidact is an individual who chooses the subject they will study, their studying material, and the studying rhythm and time. An autodidact may or may not have formal education, and their study may be either a complement or an alternative to it. Many notable contributions have been made by autodidacts.

Behaviorism

Behaviorism (or behaviourism) is a systematic approach to understanding the behavior of humans and other animals. It assumes that all behaviors are either reflexes produced by a response to certain stimuli in the environment, or a consequence of that individual's history, including especially reinforcement and punishment, together with the individual's current motivational state and controlling stimuli. Although behaviorists generally accept the important role of inheritance in determining behavior, they focus primarily on environmental factors.

Behaviorism combines elements of philosophy, methodology, and psychological theory. It emerged in the late nineteenth century as a reaction to depth psychology and other traditional forms of psychology, which often had difficulty making predictions that could be tested experimentally. The earliest derivatives of Behaviorism can be traced back to the late 19th century where Edward Thorndike pioneered the law of effect, a process that involved strengthening behavior through the use of reinforcement.

During the first half of the twentieth century, John B. Watson devised methodological behaviorism, which rejected introspective methods and sought to understand behavior by only measuring observable behaviors and events. It was not until the 1930s that B. F. Skinner suggested that private events—including thoughts and feelings—should be subjected to the same controlling variables as observable behavior, which became the basis for his philosophy called "radical behaviorism." While Watson and Ivan Pavlov investigated the stimulus-response procedures of classical conditioning, Skinner assessed the controlling nature of consequences and also its potential effect on the antecedents (or discriminative stimuli) that strengthens behavior; the technique became known as operant conditioning.

Skinner's radical behaviorism has been highly successful experimentally, revealing new phenomena with new methods, but Skinner’s dismissal of theory limited its development. Theoretical behaviorism recognized that a historical system, an organism, has a state as well as sensitivity to stimuli and the ability to emit responses. Indeed, Skinner himself acknowledged the possibility of what he called “latent” responses in humans, even though he neglected to extend this idea to rats and pigeons. Latent responses constitute a repertoire, from which operant reinforcement can select.

The application of radical behaviorism—known as applied behavior analysis—is used in a variety of settings, including, for example, organizational behavior management, to the treatment of mental disorders, such as autism and substance abuse. In addition, while behaviorism and cognitive schools of psychological thought may not agree theoretically, they have complemented each other in cognitive-behavior therapies, which have demonstrated utility in treating certain pathologies, including simple phobias, PTSD, and mood disorders.

Data mining

Data mining is the process of discovering patterns in large data sets involving methods at the intersection of machine learning, statistics, and database systems. Data mining is an interdisciplinary subfield of computer science and statistics with an overall goal to extract information (with intelligent methods) from a data set and transform the information into a comprehensible structure for further use. Data mining is the analysis step of the "knowledge discovery in databases" process, or KDD. Aside from the raw analysis step, it also involves database and data management aspects, data pre-processing, model and inference considerations, interestingness metrics, complexity considerations, post-processing of discovered structures, visualization, and online updating. The difference between data analysis and data mining is that data analysis is to summarize the history such as analyzing the effectiveness of a marketing campaign, in contrast, data mining focuses on using specific machine learning and statistical models to predict the future and discover the patterns among data.The term "data mining" is in fact a misnomer, because the goal is the extraction of patterns and knowledge from large amounts of data, not the extraction (mining) of data itself. It also is a buzzword and is frequently applied to any form of large-scale data or information processing (collection, extraction, warehousing, analysis, and statistics) as well as any application of computer decision support system, including artificial intelligence (e.g., machine learning) and business intelligence. The book Data mining: Practical machine learning tools and techniques with Java (which covers mostly machine learning material) was originally to be named just Practical machine learning, and the term data mining was only added for marketing reasons. Often the more general terms (large scale) data analysis and analytics – or, when referring to actual methods, artificial intelligence and machine learning – are more appropriate.

The actual data mining task is the semi-automatic or automatic analysis of large quantities of data to extract previously unknown, interesting patterns such as groups of data records (cluster analysis), unusual records (anomaly detection), and dependencies (association rule mining, sequential pattern mining). This usually involves using database techniques such as spatial indices. These patterns can then be seen as a kind of summary of the input data, and may be used in further analysis or, for example, in machine learning and predictive analytics. For example, the data mining step might identify multiple groups in the data, which can then be used to obtain more accurate prediction results by a decision support system. Neither the data collection, data preparation, nor result interpretation and reporting is part of the data mining step, but do belong to the overall KDD process as additional steps.

The related terms data dredging, data fishing, and data snooping refer to the use of data mining methods to sample parts of a larger population data set that are (or may be) too small for reliable statistical inferences to be made about the validity of any patterns discovered. These methods can, however, be used in creating new hypotheses to test against the larger data populations.

Deep learning

Deep learning (also known as deep structured learning or hierarchical learning) is part of a broader family of machine learning methods based on learning data representations, as opposed to task-specific algorithms. Learning can be supervised, semi-supervised or unsupervised.Deep learning architectures such as deep neural networks, deep belief networks and recurrent neural networks have been applied to fields including computer vision, speech recognition, natural language processing, audio recognition, social network filtering, machine translation, bioinformatics, drug design, medical image analysis, material inspection and board game programs, where they have produced results comparable to and in some cases superior to human experts.

Deep learning models are vaguely inspired by information processing and communication patterns in biological nervous systems yet have various differences from the structural and functional properties of biological brains (especially human brains), which make them incompatible with neuroscience evidences.

Distance education

Distance education or long-distance learning is the education of students who may not always be physically present at a school. Traditionally, this usually involved correspondence courses wherein the student corresponded with the school via post. Today it involves online education. Courses that are conducted (51 percent or more) are either hybrid, blended or 100% distance learning. Massive open online courses (MOOCs), offering large-scale interactive participation and open access through the World Wide Web or other network technologies, are recent developments in distance education. A number of other terms (distributed learning, e-learning, online learning, virtual classroom etc.) are used roughly synonymously with distance education.

Education

Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits. Educational methods include storytelling, discussion, teaching, training, and directed research. Education frequently takes place under the guidance of educators, but learners may also educate themselves. Education can take place in formal or informal settings and any experience that has a formative effect on the way one thinks, feels, or acts may be considered educational. The methodology of teaching is called pedagogy.

Formal education is commonly divided formally into such stages as preschool or kindergarten, primary school, secondary school and then college, university, or apprenticeship.

A right to education has been recognized by some governments and the United Nations. In most regions, education is compulsory up to a certain age.

Educational technology

Educational technology is "the study and ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using, and managing appropriate technological processes and resources".Educational technology is the use of both physical hardware and educational theoretic. It encompasses several domains including learning theory, computer-based training, online learning, and where mobile technologies are used, m-learning. Accordingly, there are several discrete aspects to describing the intellectual and technical development of educational technology:

Educational technology as the theory and practice of educational approaches to learning.

Educational technology as technological tools and media, for instance massive online courses, that assist in the communication of knowledge, and its development and exchange. This is usually what people are referring to when they use the term 'EdTech'.

Educational technology for learning management systems (LMS), such as tools for student and curriculum management, and education management information systems (EMIS).

Educational technology as back-office management, such as training management systems for logistics and budget management, and Learning Record Store (LRS) for learning data storage and analysis.

Educational technology itself as an educational subject; such courses may be called "Computer Studies" or "Information and communications technology (ICT)".

Higher education

Higher education (also called post-secondary education, third-level or tertiary education) is an optional final stage of formal learning that occurs after completion of secondary education. Often delivered at universities, academies, colleges, seminaries, conservatories, and institutes of technology, higher education is also available through certain college-level institutions, including vocational schools, trade schools, and other career colleges that award academic degrees or professional certifications. Tertiary education at non-degree level is sometimes referred to as further education or continuing education as distinct from higher education. The right of access to higher education is mentioned in a number of international human rights instruments. The UN International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of 1966 declares, in Article 13, that "higher education shall be made equally accessible to all, on the basis of capacity, by every appropriate means, and in particular by the progressive introduction of free education". In Europe, Article 2 of the First Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights, adopted in 1950, obliges all signatory parties to guarantee the right to education.

In the days when few pupils progressed beyond primary education or basic education, the term "higher education" was often used to refer to secondary education, which can create some confusion. This is the origin of the term high school for various schools for children between the ages of 14 and 18 (United States) or 11 and 18 (UK and Australia).

Higher education includes teaching, research, exacting applied work (e.g. in medical schools and dental schools), and social services activities of universities. Within the realm of teaching, it includes both the undergraduate level, and beyond that, graduate-level (or postgraduate level). The latter level of education is often referred to as graduate school, especially in North America. In addition to the skills that are specific to any particular degree, potential employers in any profession are looking for evidence of critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills, teamworking skills, information literacy, ethical judgment, decision-making skills, fluency in speaking and writing, problem solving skills, and a wide knowledge of liberal arts and sciences.Since World War II, developed and many developing countries have increased the participation of the age group who mostly studies higher education from the elite rate, of up to 15 per cent, to the mass rate of 16 to 50 per cent. In many developed countries, participation in higher education has continued to increase towards universal or, what Trow later called, open access, where over half of the relevant age group participate in higher education. Higher education is important to national economies, both as an industry, in its own right, and as a source of trained and educated personnel for the rest of the economy. College educated workers have commanded a measurable wage premium and are much less likely to become unemployed than less educated workers. However, the admission of so many students of only average ability to higher education inevitably requires a decline in academic standards, facilitated by grade inflation. Also, the supply of graduates in many fields of study is exceeding the demand for their skills, which aggravates graduate unemployment, underemployment, credentialism and educational inflation.

Intellectual disability

Intellectual disability (ID), also known as general learning disability and mental retardation (MR), is a generalized neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by significantly impaired intellectual and adaptive functioning. It is defined by an IQ under 70 in addition to deficits in two or more adaptive behaviors that affect everyday, general living.

Once focused almost entirely on cognition, the definition now includes both a component relating to mental functioning and one relating to individuals' functional skills in their environments. As a result of this focus on the person's abilities in practice, a person with an unusually low IQ may not be considered to have intellectual disability.

Intellectual disability is subdivided into syndromic intellectual disability, in which intellectual deficits associated with other medical and behavioral signs and symptoms are present, and non-syndromic intellectual disability, in which intellectual deficits appear without other abnormalities. Down syndrome and fragile X syndrome are examples of syndromic intellectual disabilities.

Intellectual disability affects about 2–3% of the general population. Seventy-five to ninety percent of the affected people have mild intellectual disability. Non-syndromic or idiopathic cases account for 30–50% of cases. About a quarter of cases are caused by a genetic disorder, and about 5% of cases are inherited from a person's parents. Cases of unknown cause affect about 95 million people as of 2013.

Learning disability

Learning disability or a learning disorder is a condition in the brain that causes difficulty and struggle to comprehend or process information and can be caused by several different factors. Given the "difficulty learning in a typical manner", this does not exclude the ability to learn in a different manner. Therefore, some people can be more accurately described as having a "learning difference", thus avoiding any misconception of being disabled with a lack of ability to learn and possible negative stereotyping. In the UK, the term "learning disability" generally refers to an intellectual disability, while difficulties such as dyslexia and dyspraxia are usually referred to as "learning difficulties".

While learning disability, learning disorder and learning difficulty are often used interchangeably, they differ in many ways. Disorder refers to significant learning problems in an academic area. These problems, however, are not enough to warrant an official diagnosis. Learning disability, on the other hand, is an official clinical diagnosis, whereby the individual meets certain criteria, as determined by a professional (psychologist, pediatrician, etc.). The difference is in degree, frequency, and intensity of reported symptoms and problems, and thus the two should not be confused. When the term "learning disorder" is used, it describes a group of disorders characterized by inadequate development of specific academic, language, and speech skills. Types of learning disorders include reading (dyslexia), mathematics (dyscalculia) and writing (dysgraphia).The unknown factor is the disorder that affects the brain's ability to receive and process information. This disorder can make it problematic for a person to learn as quickly or in the same way as someone who is not affected by a learning disability. People with a learning disability have trouble performing specific types of skills or completing tasks if left to figure things out by themselves or if taught in conventional ways.

Individuals with learning disabilities can face unique challenges that are often pervasive throughout the lifespan. Depending on the type and severity of the disability, interventions, and current technologies may be used to help the individual learn strategies that will foster future success. Some interventions can be quite simplistic, while others are intricate and complex. Current technologies may require student training to be effective classroom supports. Teachers, parents, and schools can create plans together that tailor intervention and accommodations to aid the individuals in successfully becoming independent learners. School psychologists and other qualified professionals quite often help design the intervention and coordinate the execution of the intervention with teachers and parents.

Machine learning

Machine learning (ML) is the scientific study of algorithms and statistical models that computer systems use to progressively improve their performance on a specific task. Machine learning algorithms build a mathematical model of sample data, known as "training data", in order to make predictions or decisions without being explicitly programmed to perform the task. Machine learning algorithms are used in the applications of email filtering, detection of network intruders, and computer vision, where it is infeasible to develop an algorithm of specific instructions for performing the task. Machine learning is closely related to computational statistics, which focuses on making predictions using computers. The study of mathematical optimization delivers methods, theory and application domains to the field of machine learning. Data mining is a field of study within machine learning, and focuses on exploratory data analysis through unsupervised learning. In its application across business problems, machine learning is also referred to as predictive analytics.

Nvidia

Nvidia Corporation ( en-VID-ee-ə; more commonly referred to as Nvidia, stylized as NVIDIA, or, due to their logo, nVIDIA) is an American technology company incorporated in Delaware and based in Santa Clara, California. It designs graphics processing units (GPUs) for the gaming and professional markets, as well as system on a chip units (SoCs) for the mobile computing and automotive market. Its primary GPU product line, labeled "GeForce", is in direct competition with Advanced Micro Devices' (AMD) "Radeon" products. Nvidia expanded its presence in the gaming industry with its handheld Shield Portable, Shield Tablet and Shield Android TV.

Since 2014, Nvidia has shifted to become a platform company focused on four markets – gaming, professional visualization, data centers and auto. Nvidia is also now focused on artificial intelligence.In addition to GPU manufacturing, Nvidia provides parallel processing capabilities to researchers and scientists that allow them to efficiently run high-performance applications. They are deployed in supercomputing sites around the world. More recently, it has moved into the mobile computing market, where it produces Tegra mobile processors for smartphones and tablets as well as vehicle navigation and entertainment systems. In addition to AMD, its competitors include Intel, Qualcomm and Arm (e.g., because of Denver, while Nvidia also licenses Arm's designs).

Pedagogy

Pedagogy (, , or ) (most commonly understood as the approach to teaching) refers more broadly to the theory and practice of education, and how this influences the growth of learners. Pedagogy, taken as an academic discipline, is the study of how knowledge and skills are exchanged in an educational context, and it considers the interactions that take place during learning. Pedagogies vary greatly, as they reflect the different social, political, cultural contexts from which they emerge. Pedagogy is the act of teaching. Theories of pedagogy increasingly identify the student as an agent, and the teacher as a facilitator. Conventional western pedagogies, however, view the teacher as knowledge holder and student as the recipient of knowledge (described by Paulo Freire as "banking methods").

The pedagogy adopted by teachers shape their actions, judgments, and other teaching strategies by taking into consideration theories of learning, understandings of students and their needs, and the backgrounds and interests of individual students. Its aims may include furthering liberal education (the general development of human potential) to the narrower specifics of vocational education (the imparting and acquisition of specific skills).

Instructive strategies are governed by the pupil's background knowledge and experience, situation, and environment, as well as learning goals set by the student and teacher. One example would be the Socratic method.The teaching of adults, as a specific group, is referred to as andragogy.

Regression analysis

In statistical modeling, regression analysis is a set of statistical processes for estimating the relationships among variables. It includes many techniques for modeling and analyzing several variables, when the focus is on the relationship between a dependent variable and one or more independent variables (or 'predictors'). More specifically, regression analysis helps one understand how the typical value of the dependent variable (or 'criterion variable') changes when any one of the independent variables is varied, while the other independent variables are held fixed.

Most commonly, regression analysis estimates the conditional expectation of the dependent variable given the independent variables – that is, the average value of the dependent variable when the independent variables are fixed. Less commonly, the focus is on a quantile, or other location parameter of the conditional distribution of the dependent variable given the independent variables. In all cases, a function of the independent variables called the regression function is to be estimated. In regression analysis, it is also of interest to characterize the variation of the dependent variable around the prediction of the regression function using a probability distribution. A related but distinct approach is Necessary Condition Analysis (NCA), which estimates the maximum (rather than average) value of the dependent variable for a given value of the independent variable (ceiling line rather than central line) in order to identify what value of the independent variable is necessary but not sufficient for a given value of the dependent variable.

Regression analysis is widely used for prediction and forecasting, where its use has substantial overlap with the field of machine learning. Regression analysis is also used to understand which among the independent variables are related to the dependent variable, and to explore the forms of these relationships. In restricted circumstances, regression analysis can be used to infer causal relationships between the independent and dependent variables. However this can lead to illusions or false relationships, so caution is advisable.

Many techniques for carrying out regression analysis have been developed. Familiar methods such as linear regression and ordinary least squares regression are parametric, in that the regression function is defined in terms of a finite number of unknown parameters that are estimated from the data. Nonparametric regression refers to techniques that allow the regression function to lie in a specified set of functions, which may be infinite-dimensional.

The performance of regression analysis methods in practice depends on the form of the data generating process, and how it relates to the regression approach being used. Since the true form of the data-generating process is generally not known, regression analysis often depends to some extent on making assumptions about this process. These assumptions are sometimes testable if a sufficient quantity of data is available. Regression models for prediction are often useful even when the assumptions are moderately violated, although they may not perform optimally. However, in many applications, especially with small effects or questions of causality based on observational data, regression methods can give misleading results.In a narrower sense, regression may refer specifically to the estimation of continuous response (dependent) variables, as opposed to the discrete response variables used in classification. The case of a continuous dependent variable may be more specifically referred to as metric regression to distinguish it from related problems.

Reinforcement learning

Reinforcement learning (RL) is an area of machine learning concerned with how software agents ought to take actions in an environment so as to maximize some notion of cumulative reward. The problem, due to its generality, is studied in many other disciplines, such as game theory, control theory, operations research, information theory, simulation-based optimization, multi-agent systems, swarm intelligence, statistics and genetic algorithms. In the operations research and control literature, reinforcement learning is called approximate dynamic programming, or neuro-dynamic programming.

The problems of interest in reinforcement learning have also been studied in the theory of optimal control, which is concerned mostly with the existence and characterization of optimal solutions, and algorithms for their exact computation, and less with learning or approximation, particularly in the absence of a mathematical model of the environment. In economics and game theory, reinforcement learning may be used to explain how equilibrium may arise under bounded rationality.

In machine learning, the environment is typically formulated as a Markov Decision Process (MDP), as many reinforcement learning algorithms for this context utilize dynamic programming techniques. The main difference between the classical dynamic programming methods and reinforcement learning algorithms is that the latter do not assume knowledge of an exact mathematical model of the MDP and they target large MDPs where exact methods become infeasible.Reinforcement learning is considered as one of three machine learning paradigms, alongside supervised learning and unsupervised learning. It differs from supervised learning in that correct input/output pairs need not be presented, and sub-optimal actions need not be explicitly corrected. Instead the focus is on performance, which involves finding a balance between exploration (of uncharted territory) and exploitation (of current knowledge). The exploration vs. exploitation trade-off has been most thoroughly studied through the multi-armed bandit problem and in finite MDPs.

School

A school is an educational institution designed to provide learning spaces and learning environments for the teaching of students (or "pupils") under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is commonly compulsory. In these systems, students progress through a series of schools. The names for these schools vary by country (discussed in the Regional section below) but generally include primary school for young children and secondary school for teenagers who have completed primary education. An institution where higher education is taught, is commonly called a university college or university (but these higher education institutions are usually not compulsory.

In addition to these core schools, students in a given country may also attend schools before and after primary and secondary education. Kindergarten or pre-school provide some schooling to very young children (typically ages 3–5). University, vocational school, college or seminary may be available after secondary school. A school may be dedicated to one particular field, such as a school of economics or a school of dance. Alternative schools may provide nontraditional curriculum and methods.

There are also non-government schools, called private schools. Private schools may be required when the government does not supply adequate, or special education. Other private schools can also be religious, such as Christian schools, madrasa, hawzas (Shi'a schools), yeshivas (Jewish schools), and others; or schools that have a higher standard of education or seek to foster other personal achievements. Schools for adults include institutions of corporate training, military education and training and business schools.

In home schooling and online schools, teaching and learning take place outside a traditional school building. Schools are commonly organized in several different organizational models, including departmental, small learning communities, academies, integrated, and schools-within-a-school.

TLC (TV network)

TLC (originally an initialism for The Learning Channel) is an American basic cable and satellite television network that is owned by Discovery, Inc. Initially focused on educational and learning content, by the late 1990s, the network began to primarily focus towards reality series involving lifestyles, family life, and personal stories.

As of February 2015, TLC was available to watch in approximately 95 million American households (81.6% of households with cable television) in the United States.

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