Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania–January 10, 2007, Quantum Simulations, Inc., a developer of artificial intelligence (AI) tutoring, assessment and professional development software has received a $100,000 Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop artificial intelligence-based teaching simulation software for science and mathematics.
The six-month feasibility study will explore how Quantum’s AI tutoring and assessment engines can help new and out-of-field instructors better prepare for teaching difficult science and mathematics subjects such as chemistry by simulating typical student/teacher interactions. In an online learning environment, the software will enable teachers to become more familiar with content, effectively respond to student questions and practice proven pedagogical techniques for improving student understanding before getting in front of a live class.
“It’s like a flight simulator for teachers,” comments Mr. Dale Holder, Quantum’s Chief Academic Officer and award-winning master teacher for over 35 years. “Teacher Edition textbooks and professional development seminars a few times a year are helpful but less experienced teachers need daily support with lesson planning and working with struggling students. Quantum’s simulation software will be a convenient and effective tool to better prepare teachers for the classroom.”
Similar to observing a master teacher in class, teachers can view detailed explanations of the pedagogy behind the instructional feedback given to students and ask the artificial intelligence Teacher about key concepts and teaching techniques required to improve conceptual understanding. In this way, Quantum’s software serves as a virtual mentor and co-pilot to help the teacher navigate through the subject matter, identify common trouble spots and practice responding to student questions.
The development of Quantum’s teacher training software is urgently needed. According to the National Center for Education Statistics report, “The Condition of Education”, there is a significant shortage of qualified science and mathematics teachers in the United States. An increasing number of middle schools and high schools are forced to rely on new and out-of-field teachers to fill the gap for teaching these subjects, often resulting in a substantial decline in the quality, depth and individual attention students receive.
Quantum Simulations, Inc. develops artificial intelligence (AI) tutoring, assessment and professional development software that empowers teachers and inspires students from middle school through college to improve their knowledge and appreciation for the sciences and mathematics. Teacher tested and approved by educators across the United States, Quantum’s AI software is proven in research studies to improve comprehension, problem solving skills and test scores by as much as 50%. Quantum’s intelligent tutoring engines are integrated with existing web-based learning products, providing a strong competitive edge for distributing partners. A “technology think tank,” Quantum is funded and supported by the U.S. Department of Education, the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. For more information, visit www.quantumsimulations.com.
NSF is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering, with an annual budget of $5.58 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 1,700 universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 40,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes nearly 10,000 new funding awards. The NSF also awards over $400 million in professional and service contracts yearly. For more information, visit, www.nsf.gov.