Dr. Lester has served as Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education (2009-2012). He is an Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing. He serves on the editorial boards of Metacognition and Learning and the International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education, and he served a ten-year term on the editorial board of Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems (1997-2007). He served as Conference Co-Chair for the International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents (2008), and as Program Chair for the ACM International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces (2001), the International Conference on Intelligent Tutoring Systems (2004), and the International Conference on Foundations of Digital Games (2013). An inductee of the North Carolina State University Academy of Outstanding Teachers (1998), he is the recipient of a National Science Foundation CAREER Award (1997). In 2014, the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence elected him a AAAI Fellow.
The project draws upon intelligent tutoring and narrative-centered learning technologies to produce a suite of intelligent game-based learning environments for upper elementary school science students. The games explicitly model student knowledge and problem solving and dynamically customize feedback, advice, and explanation as appropriate. Unlike its predecessor, the platform is multi-user so it can support collaboration; offer dynamically generated feedback, advice, and explanation; and provide a pedagogical dashboard that generates student progress reports.