Tyler Cowen points to this article on a study of automated essay-grading.

“The results demonstrated that over all, automated essay scoring was capable of producing scores similar to human scores for extended-response writing items,” the Akron researchers write, “with equal performance for both source-based and traditional writing genre.”

File this under: The Diamond Age may be closer than you think.

As I have remarked recently, I think that the main capability that computers lack is the ability to interact conversationally with students, offering hints and encouragement as they try to learn. Solve that problem, and I believe you can automate education.