Carnegie Mellon University

OpenSimon Webinar Series

Welcome to the OpenSimon Webinar Series.  OpenSimon is a learning engineering community working to improve learning outcomes for individual learners while collectively advancing our larger understanding of human learning. This series consists of instruction, examples, and demonstrations of learning engineering techniques and tools, and celebrates best practices in applied learning science from members of the community. 

We are using Zoom video conferencing application for broadcasting, participation, and recording, which is free to use. The link for all OpenSimon Webinars is, or you can use the buttons next to each webinar listed below. All OpenSimon webinars will be recorded and posted to this page.

Upcoming Webinars

Watch this space for the upcoming schedule!

In the meantime, please complete the feedback survey and submit ideas for webinar topics to help shape the next year of events, and share your ideas about how the OpenSimon project can help you.

Past Webinars

Check out the slides from our latest presentation at D2L Fusion Conference on November 18, 2020, Evidence-based Courseware Improvement with OpenSimon Analytics:

Slide Deck / Handouts Only



OpenSimon Toolkit Revisited: Community discussion to frame next year of events

Recognizing the need for a shared, reliable set of learning engineering techniques and tools, the OpenSimon Toolkit was launched on May 7, 2019. Since then, OpenSimon is working to achieve the following: establish and grow a learning engineering community, made up of individual members and institutional partners; and promote and support the learning engineering ecosystem of techniques and tools for broader use and adoption.

Please complete the survey and submit ideas for webinar topics, then join the webinar to engage with OpenSimon staff to find out the results of the survey, help determine the next year of events, and share your ideas about how the OpenSimon project can help you.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT

   tools-ctat-600x600.jpg Improving Student Learning with CTAT: A Practitioner’s Perspective

The world is looking for ever more scientists and engineers skilled at their profession. In reality, however, due to perceived difficulty of these subjects and frustrations in learning the contents, many potential future professionals, who are students today, are driven away from these fields. To alleviate this problem, personalized tutoring with computer based tutors is a viable solution. Until a few years ago, making a personalized, computer based intelligent tutoring system constituted hundreds of hours of intense work from computer programmers and it was an expensive endeavor. Recently, CTAT has enabled every teacher -who is not a computer programmer -build his/her own tutors. In this presentation, we (collaborators and I) demonstrate the efficacy of such tutors. In one study, a group of N=53 students were divided into 2 groups: tutored group and control group. The pre-test and post-tests were administered to both groups. Data on students' test scores was analyzed using quantitative methods and t-test statistics, Tutored group of students showed a whopping learning gain, progressing from pre-test score of 48% to a post-test score of 94%. The control group (with no intervention) test scores remained fairly constant, going from pre-test score of 45% to post-test score of 44%. We will demonstrate a few CTAT based tutors deployed in physics end economics, and discuss our near future plans for building more tutors.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT

 View recording

Chemistry activities

Tools, Techniques, and Data to Design Open Chemistry Courseware

General Chemistry courseware delivered through OLI offers complete coverage of 1st and 2nd semester General Chemistry including: text, embedded and extensive practice with feedback, interactives, simulations, virtual labs, summative assessments, and more!
Join this webinar to find out how the courseware is designed using OLI research-based best practices including scaffolded practice and detailed, targeted, and immediate feedback. 

Wednesday, October 30, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT


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LearnSphere Logo

Learnsphere Overview: Workflows and Data Considerations 

LearnSphere integrates existing and new educational data and analysis repositories to offer the world's largest learning analytics infrastructure with methods, linked data, and portal access to relevant resources. Tigris, one component of LearnSphere, is a workflow authoring tool that facilitates the creation and sharing of custom analyses, as well as interactions with external repositories, such as DataShop, MOOCdb, DiscourseDB and DataStage. This webinar will provide an overview of Learnshpere and what is needed to create your own workflows in Tigris.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT


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learning curve

Evaluate Learning Curves With Datashop 

DataShop provides two main services to the learning science community: a central repository to secure and store research data; and a set of analysis and reporting tools. Researchers can rapidly access standard reports such as learning curves - this webinar will explore how to generate learning curves in Datashop and analyze learning.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT

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RISE Graph

Using the RISE Framework in LearnSphere 

The RISE Framework is an automated process that identifies learning resources that should be evaluated and iteratively improved. LearnSphere, part of the OpenSimon Toolkit, is a data repository and analysis tool suite that lets you create, store and re-use data analysis workflows.  This webinar will cover the Tigris workflow available in LearnSphere to automate the RISE process.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT

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Echo logo

Using Echo for Improved Course Design

The Open Learning Initiative is a flagship project of The Simon Initiative.  Author your own materials to be delivered through the OLI platform with Echo - customize existing OER materials, and evaluate those materials from a data-science perspective.
Wednesday, September 4, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT
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OLI Learning Dashboard

Open Learning Initiative (OLI) Overview: Delivery and Available Content

The Open Learning Initiative is a flagship project of The Simon Initiative, offering textbook-replacement course content built upon principles gleaned from decades of research in three CMU’s strengths: cognitive science, computer engineering, and human-computer interaction. OLI provides a harmonious platform for delivering high-quality materials with the ability to facilitate groundbreaking research.
Wednesday, August 21, 2019
3:00-4:00 pm EDT
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learnlab webinar participants
Simon Initiative LearnLab Summer School Experience
We kicked-off the webinar series on location at the the Simon Initiative LearnLab Summer School, talking with students at the end of this week-long experience to find out what they learned.
Friday, August 2, 2019

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