In the United States, one in six adults are struggling readers with a low level of proficiency (NCES, 2016). Adult literacy programs face obstacles like being underfunded, having difficulty retaining students, and catering to a diverse population. AutoTutor for Adult Reading Comprehension (AutoTutor-ARC) is a proposed tool to aid these programs.
To develop and assess AutoTutor-ARC, the Institute of Educational Sciences has funded a collaboration of researchers from the University of Memphis, Georgia State University, and Educational Testing Service.
The project is entitled “Developing a Technology-based, Reading Comprehension Instruction System for Adult Literacy Students Postsecondary and Adult Education.” Within the project, AutoTutor-ARC utilizes conversational agents, lessons with practice questions, and embedded tests to monitor student learning. AutoTutor-ARC also offers instructors a learning management system and teacher dashboard for planning and tracking students’ progress throughout the lessons. The project will evaluate the use of the web-based system as a teacher-led supplement to classroom instruction and as a distance learning platform for adult use outside of the classroom.
Principal Investigators and sub-awards to: Dr. John Sabatini and Dr. Arthur Graesser, University of Memphis; Dr. Daphne Greenberg, Georgia State University; Dr. Tenaha O’Reilly, Educational Testing Service.