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Allan M. Collins

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Title: Allan M. Collins  
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Allan M. Collins

Allan M. Collins is an American cognitive scientist, Professor Emeritus of Learning Sciences at Northwestern University's School of Education and Social Policy. His research is recognized as having broad impact on the fields of cognitive psychology, artificial intelligence, and education.

Research Contributions


Collins is most well known in psychology for his foundational research on human semantic networks). Support for their models came from a classic series of reaction-time experiments on human question answering.[1][2][3]

Artificial Intelligence

In Socratic method for tutoring causal knowledge and reasoning. In conjunction with this project he developed a formal computational theory of Socratic tutoring, derived from analyses of inquiry teaching dialogues.


As a cognitive scientist and foundational member of the field of the learning sciences, Collins has influenced several strands of educational research and development. Building upon his work on intelligent tutoring systems, he has conducted numerous projects investigating the use of technology in schools and developing educational technologies for assessing and improving student learning. Collins has gradually shifted towards the situated cognition view of knowledge being embedded in the activity, context, and culture in which it is developed and used. In response to conventional practices that often ignore the influence of culture and activity, Collins and colleagues have developed and studied cognitive apprenticeship as an effective alternative educational practice. In addition, Collins was among the first to advocate for and outline design-based research methodologies in education.

Education and Professional Appointments

Academic Honors and Service

Major publications


  1. ^ Allan M. Collins, A; M.R. Quillian (1969). "Retrieval time from semantic memory". Journal of verbal learning and verbal behavior 8 (2): 240–248.  
  2. ^ Allan M. Collins, A; M.R. Quillian (1970). "Does category size affect categorization time?". Journal of verbal learning and verbal behavior 9 (4): 432–438.  
  3. ^ Allan M. Collins, Allan M.; Elizabeth F. Loftus (1975). "A spreading-activation theory of semantic processing". Psychological Review 82 (6): 407–428.  
  4. ^ Collins, A.M.; Grignetti, M.C. (1975). "Intelligent CAI. Final Report (1 March 1971-31 August 1975)". 

External links

  • Allan M. Collin's departmental website
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