This invention relates to a system and method for interactive, adaptive, and individualized computer-assisted instruction. This invention includes an agent for each student which adapts to its student and provides individualized guidance to the student and controls to the augmented computer-assisted instructional materials. The instructional materials of this invention are augmented to communicate the student's performance and the material's pedagogical characteristics to the agent and to receive control from the agent. Preferably, the content of the communication between the agent and the materials conforms to specified interface standards so that the agent acts independently of the content of the particular materials. Also preferably, the agent can project using various I/O modalities integrated, engaging, life-like display persona(e) appropriate to the preferences of its student and appear as a virtual tutor to the student. Finally, preferably this invention is implemented on computers interconnected by a network so that instruction can be delivered to geographically distributed students from geographically distributed servers. An important application of this invention is delivering interactive, adaptive, and individualized homework to students in their homes and other locations.