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Journal of Information Science and Engineering, Vol. 21 No. 5, pp. 1031-1051 (September 2005)

An Intelligent Semantic Agent for e-Learning Message Communication

Ying-Hong Wang, Wen-Nan Wang and Chih-Hao Lin
Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering
Tamkang University
Tamsui, 251 Taiwan
E-mail: {inhon@mail, 123670@mail, chlin@cs}.tku.edu.tw

This paper presents an English chat room system in which students can discuss course contents by interacting with teachers and students. First, the novel mechanism provides Learning_Angel Agent and Semantic Agent that act as supervisors that constantly handle queries online. Next, the mechanism provides a QA subsystem that acts as an assistant. The Learning_Angel Agent can detect syntax errors made by online users. The Semantic Agent can check the semantic meaning of each sentence. Sometimes, learners make semantic level mistakes. This implies that they do not understand the course topic or some particular issue. The semantic agent can, thus, give some suggestions for corrections to the users and analyze the data in the learner corpus. Moreover, when users query the system or other online users, this system will attempt to find answers from the knowledge ontology or learner corpus that is stored in the records of previous users comments. Furthermore, if enough QA pairs can be accumulated, the FAQ can act as a powerful learning tool for learners.

Keywords: distance learning, semantic checker, FAQ, agent, link grammar, ontology

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Received July 4, 2004; revised February 1, 2005; accepted May 10, 2005.
Communicated by Robert Lewis.