Instructional Science

Constructing a model of engagement in scientific inquiry: investigating relationships between inquiry-related curiosity, dimensions of engagement, and inquiry abilities

2 weeks ago
Abstract

According to policy documents and research studies, one key objective of science education is to develop students’ inquiry abilities; however, relatively little is known about the interplay among students’ inquiry abilities, the dimensions of their engagement, and their inquiry-related curiosity. The purpose of this study is to explore how four dimensions of engagement (i.e., cognitive, behavioral, emotional, and social) were driven by inquiry-related curiosity and how they affected the students’ inquiry abilities. Structural equation modeling was employed to analyze data collected from 605 11th graders, including their responses to items in an online questionnaire and their performances on a computer-based assessment of scientific inquiry abilities. The results showed that students’ curiosity was associated with their inquiry abilities, and such an association was partially mediated by the four dimensions of engagement in science laboratory classes. Moreover, the results revealed that among the four dimensions of engagement, only cognitive and emotional engagement had significant total effects on students’ inquiry abilities and that the influence of behavioral and social engagement on inquiry abilities was completely mediated by cognitive engagement. This study suggests a critical role played by emotional engagement, cognitive engagement, and curiosity in developing students’ inquiry abilities.

Understanding instructional design effects by differentiated measurement of intrinsic, extraneous, and germane cognitive load

2 weeks ago
Abstract

Instructional design deals with the optimization of learning processes. To achieve this, three aspects need to be considered: (1) the learning task itself, (2) the design of the learning material, and (3) the activation of the learner’s cognitive processes during learning. Based on Cognitive Load Theory, learners also need to deal with the task itself, the design of the material, and the decision on how much to invest into learning. To link these concepts, and to help instructional designers and teachers, cognitive load during learning needs to be differentially measured. This article reviews studies using a questionnaire to measure intrinsic, extraneous and germane cognitive load in order to provide evidence for the instruments’ prognostic validity. Six exemplary studies from different domains with different variations of the learning material were chosen to show that the theoretically expected effects on different types of load are actually reflected in the learners’ answers in the questionnaire. Major hypotheses regarding the different load types were (1) variations in difficulty are reflected in the scale on intrinsic cognitive load, (2) variations in design are reflected in the scale on extraneous cognitive load, and (3) variations in enhancing deeper learning through activation of cognitive processes are reflected in the scale on germane cognitive load. We found prognostic validity to be good. The review concludes by discussing the practical and theoretical implications, as well as pointing out the limitations and needs for further research.

This is easy, you can do it! Feedback during mathematics problem solving is more beneficial when students expect to succeed

1 month ago
Abstract

Students’ problem-solving success depends on more than their knowledge and abilities. One factor that may play a role is the teacher’s expectations of students. The current study focused on how a teacher’s explicitly-stated expectations influence students’ ability to learn from corrective feedback during problem solving. On the one hand, setting low expectations (e.g., this task is hard, you’ll likely fail) may help students avoid disappointment in response to negative feedback, thereby facilitating student learning. On the other hand, setting low expectations may produce a self-fulfilling prophecy in which negative feedback confirms the teacher’s expectations and hinders student learning. In a controlled experiment, undergraduate students (N = 160) were randomly assigned to one of four conditions based on a crossing of two factors: teacher expectations for the student (success or failure) and verification feedback during problem solving (yes or no). Posttest performance revealed that feedback had negative effects when teachers set low expectations for students. Results suggest that basic feedback may be more beneficial when teachers help students set their expectations for success.

The effect of team learning behaviours and team mental models on teacher team performance

2 months 2 weeks ago
Abstract

Teams become a key resource for organisations to meet different challenges. Thus a high team performance is essential in work context. The aim of this study was to get a deeper understanding of meaningful team learning and team mental models in educational contexts, by analysing the effect of team learning behaviours (TLBs) on the development of task-related team mental model (Task-TMM) and team performance. A three-wave longitudinal survey was conducted among interdisciplinary vocational teacher teams (N = 66 teams with 276 team members). TLBs and team performance were measured by validated scales. Task-TMM was measured by an open question about the work tasks of the teams to achieve its goals. The answers were evaluated by content analysis and categorised according to their semantic similarity. Path modelling of the data shows that TLBs have a positive effect on developing Task-TMM and on team performance in terms of effectiveness, efficiency and innovativeness. Task-TMM has a positive effect on effectiveness but not on efficiency or innovativeness. The results provide insights into how teachers’ team performance can be fostered, such as by fostering TLBs creating a learning environment where team members depend on each other to accomplish their work tasks. Especially the longitudinal design and the type of analysis of Task-TMM provides new and deep insights into the relationship between TLBs, Task-TMM and team performance. Through the qualitative approach investigating Task-TMM the study also provides insight into the work tasks of teams in detail.

Studying the expertise reversal of the multimedia signaling effect at a process level: evidence from eye tracking

2 months 2 weeks ago
Abstract

The purpose of this study was to shed light on the cognitive processes underlying the expertise reversal effect related to multimedia signaling. Multimedia signals highlight correspondences between text and pictures, which is supposed to support text-picture integration and thus learning from multimedia. Previous research suggests that learners’ prior knowledge moderates the multimedia signaling effect in that they only aid learners with low prior knowledge (LPK). We conducted an eye tracking study with students in secondary education who learned with a digital textbook in one of the two versions: (a) a basic version with mostly text signals only (e.g., bold face), or (b) an extended version with additional multimedia signals that aimed at supporting text-picture integration (e.g., color coding of corresponding text and picture elements). In addition to learning outcomes, we assessed students’ cognitive load and gaze behavior as process measures. Results revealed that only LPK learners were supported in learning whereas HPK learners were not affected by multimedia signals (partial expertise reversal). A moderated mediation analysis revealed that multimedia signals affected gaze behavior of LPK students in that they looked earlier at pictures. For high prior knowledge students multimedia signals lead to a higher subjective germane cognitive load. Thus, multimedia signals affected processing of materials. However, the process measures did not explain the expertise reversal of the signaling effect regarding learning outcome.

The moderating role of additional information when learning with animations compared to static pictures

2 months 2 weeks ago
Abstract

In research on learning with animations compared to static pictures usually very short and narrowly defined topics are chosen. However, in school contexts such topics are often extended by additional information (i.e., information that is related to a given topic, but not essential for this topic). In the current study, that took place in a school context, it was investigated which role additional information would play when learning with animations compared to static pictures. It was hypothesized that there would be a beneficial effect of the animation, that additional information would impede learning the original topic and that the beneficial effect of the animation compared to the static picture would be even more pronounced when additional information is presented compared to when no additional information is given. A 2 × 2 between-subject design, with visualization format (animation vs. static picture) and additional information (present vs. absent) as independent variables, was used (N = 199 high school students). Learning outcomes were analysed by means of a focal contrast analysis that corresponded to the stated hypotheses. Results revealed that the hypotheses were not met for factual knowledge tasks, but for transfer tasks: Additional information hindered learning, and the advantage of the animation over the static picture was more pronounced when additional information was presented. However, it should be noted that learners receiving additional information performed better on questions about the additional information than learners without additional information. Implications of these results are discussed.

Make it relevant! How prior instructions foster the integration of teacher knowledge

2 months 2 weeks ago
Abstract

Preservice teachers face the challenge of integrating multiple types of knowledge, such as pedagogical–psychological knowledge and subject-specific pedagogical knowledge. We investigated whether prior instruction emphasizing the importance of knowledge integration (relevance instruction) supports preservice teachers in using both knowledge types simultaneously. Seventy-two preservice music teachers participated in this computer-based study. They worked on two separate lectures about learners’ beliefs. One lecture contained pedagogical–psychological knowledge; the other contained music-specific pedagogical knowledge. The preservice teachers received either a relevance instruction before starting a new lecture or a control instruction. We found that the relevance instruction increased the simultaneous use of the two knowledge types in scenario-based tasks. In these tasks, the preservice teachers needed to provide interpretations and decisions for excerpts describing various classroom situations. The relevance instruction increased the time that the preservice teachers spent on the lectures slightly; but it did not increase the perceived task difficulty or mental effort. Furthermore, the effect of the relevance instruction was not moderated by prior knowledge. We conclude that relevance instructions are a promising approach to fostering knowledge integration in teacher education.

The effect of short online pedagogical training on university teachers’ interpretations of teaching–learning situations

2 months 2 weeks ago
Abstract

The aim of the study was to explore whether short online pedagogy courses can have an effect on university teachers’ interpretations of teaching–learning situations. Before and after participating in a short online pedagogical training programme, a total of 66 participants wrote their interpretations of two short video clips, which depicted a content-focused teacher and a learning-focused teacher, respectively. The training was successful in changing participants’ interpretations from a knowledge-transmission view to a learning-facilitation view of teaching. This result indicates that even short online training programmes have the potential to affect participants’ interpretations of teaching–learning situations, especially when participants are not very experienced in teaching. Therefore, pedagogical training should be offered already at the early stages of teaching careers.