ALEKS is an acronym for Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces. It is a web-based learning and assessment system that is driven by artificial intelligence (AI) and can be used for the purpose of tutoring or home-schooling. This cutting-edge educational software offers curriculum options for grades K-12 as well as college-level instruction in a variety of subjects. By being web-based, the learning tool is available 24 hours a day, making it extremely easy and convenient to use. You can access ALEKS here.
How Can ALEKS Help Me or My Child Learn?
ALEKS approaches learning from the perspective of learning spaces. These spaces represent the current state of an individual’s knowledge regarding a particular subject. ALEKS employs adaptive questioning to precisely determine the level of knowledge a student has in the subject to be learned. This allows the system to anticipate which topics the student can most readily learn and retain, and proceeds with instruction on those topics.
Progress is made in the learning space by learning new topics. ALEKS periodically performs a reassessment of the student’s knowledge level and checks for retention of the new topics that have been presented. Because the ALEKS courses cover the subject matter in an in-depth and complete fashion, students who are doing well in an ALEKS course will also tend to perform as well in an actual classroom situation.
How Exactly Does ALEKS Work?
ALEKS is the software manifestation of Knowledge Space Theory. The core mathematical theory was created between 1983 and 1992 by Professor Jean-Claude Falmagne at New York University (NYU) and the University of California, Irvine (UCI) and Professor Jean-Paul Doignon at the University of Brussels. The National Science Foundation supplied Falmagne with several grants to further his research.
ALEKS is built with the powerful and associated technologies of artificial intelligence and machine learning (ML). Using AI, the tool maps the details of each student’s knowledge, and accurately “knows” the status regarding any particular subject in the course. It employs ML to determine which topic the student is most likely to be ready to learn at the moment. By presenting topics that the student is primed to learn, confidence and momentum are built, making for a more effective learning experience.
How Does ALEKS Teach a Subject?
The first time you access the ALEKS student login, you are taught how to use the answer input tools. These replicate what could be done with paper and pencil, as ALEKS does not use multiple choice questions in its assessment or instruction. Through the use of a short assessment of about 25 questions, ALEKS assesses the student’s current level of knowledge in the course materials. The questions are tailored to each individual and modified based on previous answers.
The assessment leads to ALEKS presenting the student with topics that they have the requisite knowledge to successfully learn. Practice problems that demand a thorough understanding of the specific topic are given to the student until they can demonstrate a sufficient level of mastery that the topic is considered to have been learned.
Students can track their progress through the course and ALEKS periodically reassesses the student to ensure that the new topics are achieving long-term retention. The AI brains behind ALEKS ensures that the students have a thorough understanding of the topics by the time they finish the course. A login to ALEKS brings the student right back to the place where they left off, even if there was a power disruption or network outage.
What Subjects Can I Learn with ALEKS?
ALEKS specializes in mathematical instruction and has a wide variety of specific courses that are appropriate for elementary through high school students. There are also high school level ALEKS math courses that assist with the mathematics required in chemistry and physics. Math students in any grade can benefit from using this software tool.
The higher education offerings available through ALEKS include a large selection of mathematics course as well as many business and science courses. Consult this website for a complete list of the courses available.
How Is ALEKS Used in the Education System?
ALEKS is gaining traction in a number of usage scenarios through various parts of the education system. Among them are:
- Mathematical Course Assessments — Universities are assessing the ability of incoming students to handle mathematics courses by assessing them with an ALEKS test. Through the use of the ALEKS Placement, Preparation and Learning (ALEKS PPL) platform, placement and remediation is offered to students in courses ranging from basic math to calculus. Use of these assessments and learning opportunities has increased the success of students as they are placed in the appropriate level course.
- Additional Course Resource — Educational institutions of any level can implement ALEKS and enable students to access the tool in order to prepare for courses and obtain extra practice in problem areas. Less class time is needed to repeat previous lessons as students can get the help they need on their own time. Instructors can learn how to integrate ALEKS into their course by visiting this webpage.
- Mathematics Homeschooling — ALEKS is an excellent tool that can assist those engaged in homeschooling in teaching mathematics to their children. This is often one of the most challenging subjects to teach from home and ALEKS offers a curriculum for grades 3 through 12. No textbook is required and the software runs on both the Windows and Mac operating systems. Learning and retention rates when using ALEKS are approximately 90%.
- Tutor Alternative — ALEKS can be instrumental in helping a student that is struggling with their mathematics course in school. The ability of the software to identify the weak areas of the student’s knowledge and address them with practice and guidance will lead to more confident and successful students.
How Much Does ALEKS Cost?
An individual can subscribe to ALEKS for less than $20 a month. This is far less than the cost of a personal tutor and has the advantages of being able to be used at any time or place where a web-browser and Internet connection is available. It is a great resource for anyone needing some personalized mathematical instruction.