Defining the Ill-Defined: From Abstract Principles to Applied Pedagogy
[Technical Report, Book Chapter]
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELESARMY RESEARCH LAB ADELPHI MDOAK RIDGE ASSOCIATED UNIVERSITIES
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Attempts to define ill-defined domains in intelligent tutoring system ITS research has been approached a number of times Fournier-Viger, Nkambou, and Nguifo, 2010 Lynch, Ashley, Pinkwart, and Aleven, 2009 Mitrovic and Weerasinghe, 2009 Jacovina, Snow, Dai, and McNamara, 2015 Woods, Stensrud, Wray, Haley, and Jones, 2015. Related research has tried to determine levels of ill-definedness for a domain Le, Loll, and Pinkwart, 2013. Despite such attempts, the field has not yet converged on common guidelines to distinguish between well-defined versus ill-defined domains. We argue that such guidelines struggle to converge because a domain is too large to meaningfully categorize every domain contains a mixture of well-defined and ill-defined tasks. While the co-existence of well-defined and ill-defined tasks in a single domain is nearly universally-agreed upon by researchers this key point is often quickly buried by an extensive discussion about what makes certain domain tasks ill-defined e.g., disagreement about ideal solutions, multiple solution paths.