"Critical Thinking and Intelligent Tutoring Systems"

The most prominent form of instruction utilizing computer systems is known as Computer Assisted
Instruction (CAI). The earlier versions of these systems tended to be based on Skinnerian principles and
stressed methods such programmed instruction and drill and practice. Although some systems are still
based on this method of delivery, content and design have improved considerably. However, these
systems can sometimes still be thought of a nothing more than "electronic page turners" (Barr, 1982).
Should these forms of systems be applied to the area of critical thinking, it would seem that their
performance could be less than satisfactory.

It would appear that computer-based instructional systems could have a better chance of fostering critical
thinking skills if they included the principle of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Expert Systems (ES). In
particular, CAI system incorporating the principles of AI and ES ar  known as Intelligent Computer Assisted
Instruction (ICAI) or, in other words, Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITS). These types of systems are not
based on a static data base with a preset list of questions and answers. These systems are known as
adaptive or reactive systems because questions and answers are not preset and, instead, alter their
strategies based upon the actions and reactions of students.
by James T. Streib
in "Problem Solving and Critical Thinking for Computer Science Educators"
Edited By Cathleen A. Norris and James L. Poirot
International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), 1991
ERIC Document:  (
ED 348971)