Imec's smart education program focuses on the efficient use of educational technologies. It encompasses the development and testing of smart technologies (sensors, algorithms, adaptive learning platforms, etc.) that facilitate interaction and collaboration in the learning process and lay the foundation of tailor-made learning solutions. In today's knowledge society, such solutions are crucial to optimize the acquisition of knowledge and skills – in a way that is tailored to individual learning characteristics.
The smart education program rallies researchers from across imec – including research groups at KU Leuven, VUB and Ghent University. Together, they develop smart education solutions - thereby focusing on:
Research on individual learning behavior, which should lead to the creation of tailor-made learning solutions that enable anyone to acquire knowledge in an optimal, personalized way.
The development of smart education technologies – from sensors that capture neurological data, to data analysis software and visualization and gamification technology.
Living Lab research featuring real users in authentic learning environments – enabling new educational technologies to be extensively tested and fine-tuned.
Socio-economic valorization – not only by implementing smart education technology and know-how in Flemish schools and training centers, but also by exporting the technology.
The research results are also applied within the imec.academy-training offer. Imec.academy offers a wide range of professional courses on nanoelectronics and digital technology; courses that attract students from around the world. They use a smart, blended mix of e-learning and classroom sessions – and course content is dynamically adjusted in function of students’ level and the questions they ask. This training service is further being optimized based on imec’s smart education research. Using intelligent technology, we ultimately want to offer educational solutions that are unrivalled in the market and that are tailored to the profile of each individual student.
Edulab – an interactive testing environment for interactive and collaborative learning
Imec's smart education research leverages the 'Edulab’ at the Kortrijk campus of KU Leuven (KULAK). The 'Edulab' is an interactive testing environment where students can use technologies that enable interactive and collaborative learning – during both lectures and practical courses. Edulab also features remote classrooms (to foster learning from different locations) and virtual classrooms that have been developed together with KU Leuven, Barco and Televic.
The imec - ITEC - KU Leuven research group has a very strong tradition in educational technology research. In its Edulab, the team will unravel how individuals learn – by looking for patterns in huge amounts of user data, the semi-automated analysis of learners’ output or by using sensors to monitor learners’ attention and observing where / when they drop out. This knowledge is translated into detailed guidelines for education professionals, allowing them to better assess how new educational technologies can be used optimally. Moreover, these findings will result in innovative, tailor-made learning solutions created with the support of a number of industry partners.