Digital Tutors May Edge Out Real Thing

Virtual educators don't get frustrated and kids aren't afraid of errors
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Feb 22, 2008 3:33 AM CST
Digital tutors help kids learn social and language skills.    (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – The best education available these days may be a virtual one, scientists are finding. Today´s digital educators can teach anything from social to language skills—and don't get tired, bored or irritable, LiveScience reports. The programs are a perfect match for autistic kids, who often find face-to-face interactions overwhelming.

One scientist has developed a cartoon "virtual child" to teach autistic kids how to better interact with playmates when sharing toys. Another area where virtual learning appears to excel is in foreign language acquisition and improving language skills. One new program shows viewers exactly where to place their tongue to get the sounds right. Such digital tutors "can be less intimidating because students don't feel shy about making mistakes," said the inventor.