Field of Work
Artificial intelligence (AI) accompanies our everyday lives, is a component of technical innovations, and is increasingly finding its way into our educational world. Educational technologies that can adaptively adjust to learners, their specifics and situational contexts have great potential to support learning effectively and sustainably. But how exactly can we best tailor such systems to help learners achieve their educational goals over the long term?
At the interdisciplinary intersection of psychology, computer science, and education, Wirzberger and her team are combining cognitive theories on instructional design with psychological methods and AI-based algorithms to approach this question from different perspectives. The recent pandemic, if nothing else, has highlighted the need for educational stakeholders such as teachers to be adequately prepared to work with such technological innovations. Wirzberger and her team therefore also focus on critically reflecting on the implications and needs arising from the use of such systems at the institutional, societal, and political levels.
Maria Wirzberger (*1983 in Lohr am Main) is a tenure-track professor for teaching and learning with intelligent systems at the University of Stuttgart, where she has headed the respective department since March 2020. As a cognitive psychologist with strong connections to computer science, her research activities are characterized by an interdisciplinary perspective.
Prior to her appointment at the University of Stuttgart, she led the development of an AI-supported attention training at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Tübingen. At the interface of AI and education, she is a member of the board of directors of the Artificial Intelligence Software Academy (AISA) and involved in several externally funded projects at the University of Stuttgart.
With the goal of critically reflecting on the societal impact of AI-based systems, she is the spokesperson of the "Interchange Forum for Reflecting on Intelligent Systems" (IRIS) research focus and a member of the "Platform of Reflection" of the Cluster of Excellence "Data-Integrated Simulation Science" (SimTech). Furthermore, she represented the University of Stuttgart and Cyber Valley with this focus in the Commission Expert Group "AI and Data in Education and Training". In May 2022, she was accepted as a fellow at the Elisabeth Schiemann Kolleg of the Max Planck Society.