SYNTEA: AI Revolution in Online Education

SYNTEA: AI Revolution in Online Education

The IU International University (IU) is Germany’s largest university with over 100,000 students. As a pioneer in the field of digital learning tools, it actively integrates them into its teaching to offer personalized education to students worldwide. Using state-of-the-art technologies such as Language Models (LLMs) and GPT, IU developed the AI-powered teaching and learning assistant “Syntea.” Currently, over 10,000 IU students are using it, and it will soon be accessible to all. Syntea enables personalized interactions, improves learning outcomes, and offers features such as a question-answer tool, exam preparation, and Socratic dialogues.

Syntea’s question-answer function: Cutting-edge interaction with students

The QA tool (Question-Answer) of Syntea revolutionizes the interaction between students and course content as well as professors. It allows students to ask questions about the study material anytime, providing them with maximum flexibility in learning. Syntea’s answers are reviewed by human tutors within 24 hours to ensure a valid learning experience that can also be used for exams.

In addition to the answers, Syntea sends links to relevant content from IU’s virtual learning library, which contains over 14,000 course materials. This enables students to delve into topics quickly, gather more information, and set their own learning priorities.

Syntea seamlessly integrates into various channels such as web applications, chat clients, and mobile devices. Thanks to its conversational interface, students can interact with Syntea in a natural and intuitive way.

For a demonstration of Syntea, visit the IU University homepage.

User feedback is positive: 85% find the AI-generated answers helpful. Currently, about 65% of Syntea’s answers are confirmed by human tutors. In the remaining cases, tutors improve or supplement the answers with additional details and examples.

The QA tool is based on state-of-the-art NLP models and currently uses GPT version 3.5. With the introduction of GPT-4, Syntea will be significantly improved, with new capabilities and increased effectiveness and accuracy of the answers.

Compared to traditional communication channels, Syntea is experiencing a growing number of questions, underscoring its acceptance and positive impact on students’ learning experiences.


Syntea as Exam Trainer: Enhanced Preparation and Confidence

The Trainer Tool of Syntea focuses on improving learners’ exam preparation by providing exam-like questions and continuous personal feedback throughout the course. By simulating real exam conditions, the Trainer Tool promotes a deeper understanding of the study material and enhances students’ problem-solving skills. It also helps them better understand their learning focus and the timing for optimal preparation for the final exam, thereby boosting their confidence and success on their educational journey.

Initially, he Trainer Tool was introduced successfully in selected courses, with plans for expansion to other courses.

The Future of Learning: Socratic Teaching and Future Skills Training

The IU International University is developing further innovative features not only for its own AI-powered learning assistant Syntea but also to set new standards in online education. Established concepts such as Socratic teaching and the development of future skills play a crucial role. These components aim to revolutionize the learning experience by promoting student engagement, critical thinking, and career preparation.

Inspired by the methods of philosopher Socrates, Socratic teaching employs a dialogue-based approach to convey knowledge and stimulate critical thinking in students. By integrating this approach, Syntea’s Socratic teaching becomes an engaging and interactive learning experience that encourages students to deepen their understanding of the course material.

Syntea’s Future Skills Training component helps students prepare for the rapidly changing demands of the workplace. Given the increasing prevalence of AI tools, it is crucial for students to acquire the skills needed to tackle future challenges. This goes beyond memorizing content and focuses on developing competencies such as negotiation skills or fostering creativity. Future Skills Training provides realistic training experiences that optimally prepare students for their future careers.

Both Socratic teaching and Future Skills Training are currently in the testing phase and receiving promising feedback. The IU will continue to play a leading role in providing innovative teaching and learning solutions by further developing these features and integrating them into the Syntea platform. This will provide students with a more personalized and flexible education.


The IU International University is pioneering online education through the integration of AI-powered solutions like Syntea. Leveraging state-of-the-art NLP technologies and GPT models, IU creates a more personalized, engaging, and effective learning environment.

The various features of Syntea, including the QA tool, exam trainer, Socratic dialogue, and Future Skills Training, demonstrate the university’s commitment to promoting critical thinking and adaptability among students. By further developing these innovative tools, IU equips students worldwide with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in an ever-evolving workplace.

“We at IU are proud to be at the forefront of the AI-driven learning revolution. By continually pushing the boundaries of what is possible with AI technology in higher education, we strive to provide our students with the best possible learning experience to ensure their success now and in the future,” says Sven Schütt, CEO of IU International University.

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