Comparative study on heterogeneous profiling sources for second language learners

Di ZOU, Haoran XIE*, Fu Lee WANG, Tak Lam WONG, Chung Keung POON, Wai Shing HO

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsConference paper (refereed)Researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Stimulated by the arrival of the big data era, various and heterogeneous data sources such as data in social networks, mobile devices and sensor data for users have emerged, mirroring characteristics and preferences of data owners. These data sources are often used to construct user profiles so as to facilitate personalized services like recommendations or personalized data access. In the context of second language learning, learner data involve learning logs, standard test results, and individual learning preferences and styles. Given its attribute of reflecting the characteristics of learners, such data can be exploited to build the learner profiles. However, these data sources possibly include noises or bias, and hence influence the reliability of the correspondingly constructed learner profiles. Consequently, the inaccurate profiles may result in ineffective learning tasks that are generated by e-Learning systems. To tackle this issue, it is significant and critical to evaluate the accuracy of learner profiles. In a response to this call, we propose a novel metric named "profile mean square error" to examine the accuracy of learner profiles founded upon diverse sources. We also demonstrate how to construct various learner profiles though applying different data sources such as learning logs, standard test results, and personal learning preferences in e-Learning systems and pedagogical activities. Moreover, we conduct an experimental study among some second language learners, the results of which illustrate that the most accurate profiles are generated from multiple data sources if they are integrated in a rational way.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTechnology in Education
Subtitle of host publicationTechnology-Mediated Proactive Learning - 2nd International Conference, ICTE 2015, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsTak Lam Wong, Jeanne Lam, Kwan Keung Ng, Fu Lee Wang, Simon K.S. Cheung, Kam Cheong Li
PublisherSpringer-Verlag GmbH and Co. KG
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9783662489772
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes
Event2nd International Conference on Technology in Education: Technology-Mediated Proactive Learning, ICTE 2015 - Hong Kong, China
Duration: 2 Jul 20154 Jul 2015

Publication series

NameCommunications in Computer and Information Science
ISSN (Print)1865-0929


Conference2nd International Conference on Technology in Education: Technology-Mediated Proactive Learning, ICTE 2015
CityHong Kong


  • Evaluation
  • Language learning
  • Learner profile
  • Profile accuracy


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