Instructional Science

Strategies for facilitating processing of transient information in instructional videos by using learner control mechanisms

6 days 18 hours ago
Abstract

Learner control of video presentations by using pause buttons or timeline scrollbars was suggested as helpful for learning from sources of transient information such as dynamic visualizations and spoken words. However, effective learner control could be difficult to attain without sufficient instructional support. This study developed strategies for facilitating processing and integration of transient information based on cognitive load theory by providing learners with explicit guidance in when and how to use pausing and timeline scrollbars while watching instructional videos. A single-factor between-subjects experiment was conducted to examine the effects of the proposed strategies. Ninety undergraduates were randomly assigned to one of three groups - strategy guidance group (learners were provided with guidance in strategies), learner control group (learners were allowed to control the video but without any guidance in strategies), and continuous presentation group (without any learner control mechanism). The results revealed that compared to the learner control group, the strategy guidance group had a greater number of pauses and scrollbacks on the timeline, demonstrated significantly better performance in the immediate comprehension test and higher performance efficiency in the immediate recall and comprehension tests. Compared to the continuous presentation group, the strategy guidance group demonstrated significantly better performance in the immediate recall and comprehension tests and higher performance efficiency in both these tests, as well as better performance in the delayed recall test and higher performance efficiency in the delayed recall test.

Promoting teachers' in-class SRL practices: effects of Authentic Interactive Dynamic Experiences (AIDE) based on simulations and video

6 days 18 hours ago
Abstract

Self-regulated learning (SRL) is essential for independent active learners. Despite its importance, supporting students' SRL is often challenging for teachers who lack the necessary knowledge and skills for in-class SRL practices. Hence, there is a need to support teachers' SRL: both as learners—how to self-regulate their own learning, and as teachers—how to use practices to support students' SRL. This study proposes an innovative instructional model empowered by “Authentic Interactive Dynamic Experiences” (“AIDE”) oriented to SRL and called the SRL–AIDE model. To examine the effectiveness of the model, we designed a professional development program based on the SRL–AIDE model, called the SRL–AIDE program. It involved explicit exposure to SRL theory, beliefs in independent learning as enhancing SRL, and immersive experiences including video-based learning and simulations with live actors to stimulate motivation for SRL classroom implementation. The model’s effectiveness was evaluated using authentic methods. Seventy-six teachers participated in either the SRL–AIDE program (experimental group) or a control program focused on effective learning principles. The results indicated a shift in beliefs toward independent learning as a core behavior in enhancing SRL, and a highly significant and systematic increase among the experimental group in the lesson plan, performance, and reflection (on the performed lesson) as phases in the teaching relating to the SRL cycle, including cognitive, metacognitive, and independent learning strategies. The improvements of the SRL practices were apparent in two measurement types: explicitness level and duration. Implications for class instruction, teachers’ professional development oriented toward students’ outcomes, and authentic evaluation are discussed.

Spatial supports for comparison in educational science images

6 days 18 hours ago
Abstract

Images, such as photographs and diagrams, play an important role in the teaching and learning of science. To optimize student learning, educational science images should be designed to facilitate the cognitive processes relevant to comprehension. One such process is comparison, which involves aligning multiple representations on the basis of their common relational structure. This structural alignment process can be facilitated by cognitive supports that are inherent to an image, including its spatial layout. Yet, little is known about the extent to which students must engage in comparison to learn from science images, and whether widely-used educational materials are conducive to structural alignment. To address these issues, we sampled multiple chapters from each of three popular U.S. middle school life science textbooks. We coded each image for the presence of prompts for comparison using cues within the images and surrounding text. For each image that prompted comparison, we coded whether its layout facilitated relevant structural alignment (direct placement of matched pairs) or obscured alignment (impeded placement). Overall, we found that comparisons were prompted for more than a third of the images. However, fewer than half of the images that required comparison had a spatial layout that provided strong support for comparison—that is, direct placement of matched objects/parts. We propose that, in concert with other cognitive supports for learning from multiple representations, spatial supports for comparison could be applied broadly to increase the effectiveness of educational science images.

Medical education videos as a tool for rehearsal: efficiency and the cases of background music and difficulty

6 days 18 hours ago
Abstract

This study reports a field experiment investigating how instructional videos with and without background music contribute to the learning of examination techniques within a formal curriculum of medical teaching. Following a classroom teaching unit on the techniques for examining the knee and the shoulder joint, our participants (N = 175) rehearsed the studied techniques for either the knee or the shoulder joint with an instructional video with or without background music. As dependent measures, we collected a general questionnaire, a prediction of test performance, as well as performance on an exam-like knowledge test covering both joints. For both videos, the participants who had watched the particular video during rehearsal were more accurate in answering the corresponding questions than the participants who had seen the other video, signaling that instructional videos provide a useful tool for rehearsal (i.e., both groups reciprocally served as control groups). For the knee video (less difficult), we observed a detrimental effect of the background music, whereas we observed no such effect for the shoulder video (more difficult). Further explorations revealed that background music might be detrimental for learning, as it reduces the perceived demand characteristics. Because the impact of the demand characteristics might be more pronounced in less difficult instructional videos, we discuss video difficulty as a potential moderating factor. Overall, our study provides evidence that instructional videos could be usefully implemented in formal teaching curricula and that such instructional videos probably should be designed without background music.

Orchestrating the flow and advancement of knowledge artifacts in an online class

6 days 18 hours ago
Abstract

This paper explores orchestration support introduced to an online class to help students operate as a knowledge community. A technological design was introduced to provide a flexible, dynamic learning environment so that ideas and knowledge artifacts can flow across time, space, and people in the community. With support from a CSCL technology named FROG, we incorporated several general-purpose tools to support a variety of collaborative activities and relied on FROG as a backbone to connect these tools and orchestrate knowledge flows among them. Through a mixed-methods case study, we investigated the ways in which the design facilitated the flow of knowledge artifacts and idea development. Detailed analysis of a rich dataset revealed multiple ways in which ideas and artifacts flowed in the community, leading to growth in both individual learning and group projects. However, these phenomena varied across groups. This paper advances the community approach to learning by devising new technological and pedagogical supports. It also highlights the prospect of bringing guidance, control, and agency—long-standing issues of CSCL—into productive dialogues.

A framework for supporting systems thinking and computational thinking through constructing models

6 days 18 hours ago
Abstract

We face complex global issues such as climate change that challenge our ability as humans to manage them. Models have been used as a pivotal science and engineering tool to investigate, represent, explain, and predict phenomena or solve problems that involve multi-faceted systems across many fields. To fully explain complex phenomena or solve problems using models requires both systems thinking (ST) and computational thinking (CT). This study proposes a theoretical framework that uses modeling as a way to integrate ST and CT. We developed a framework to guide the complex process of developing curriculum, learning tools, support strategies, and assessments for engaging learners in ST and CT in the context of modeling. The framework includes essential aspects of ST and CT based on selected literature, and illustrates how each modeling practice draws upon aspects of both ST and CT to support explaining phenomena and solving problems. We use computational models to show how these ST and CT aspects are manifested in modeling.

Computer versus longhand note taking: Influence of revision

1 week 2 days ago
Abstract

Many college students believe that typing lecture notes on computers produces better notes and higher achievement than handwritten lecture notes on paper. The few studies investigating computer versus longhand note taking yielded mixed note-taking and achievement findings. The present study investigated computer versus longhand note taking but permitted note takers to revise or recopy notes during pauses interspersed throughout the lecture. Moreover, the present study analyzed notes recorded while a lecture was ongoing and following revision pauses to determine if lecture ideas and images were recorded completely or partially. Findings did not support the belief that computers aid note taking and achievement and, instead, favored longhand note taking and revision. Computer and longhand note takers recorded a comparable number of complete and partial ideas in notes while the lecture was ongoing, but longhand note takers recorded more lecture images. Among note revisers, longhand note takers added three-times-as-many complete ideas to their notes during revision as computer note takers—an important finding because note completeness predicted achievement. Achievement results showed that longhand note takers who revised notes scored more than half a letter grade higher on a lecture posttest than computer note takers who revised notes. Present findings suggest that college instructors should provide students with revision pauses to improve note taking and achievement and encourage students to record and revise notes using the longhand method. Finally, regarding the computer versus longhand note-taking debate, the need to investigate further the interplay between note-taking medium and lesson material is discussed.

Generative learning supports learning from video lectures: evidence from an EEG study

1 week 6 days ago
Abstract

This electroencephalography (EEG) study tested the benefits of generative learning and the underlying neural mechanism of these benefits when learning from video lectures. Twenty-six Chinese young adults independently viewed two video lectures in a repeated measures design. Each video lecture was broken into 40 segments, and after each segment, the participants either generated an oral sentence (generative learning condition) or viewed a sentence (passive viewing condition). Participants’ learning performance (accuracy and reaction time) were assessed after viewing each video, and their EEG oscillations (i.e., lower alpha band and upper alpha band in frontal and occipital-parietal regions) were recorded while watching each video and while generating a sentence or viewing a sentence. Paired t tests showed that students had higher learning performance (higher accuracy and shorter reaction time) after learning by using a generative learning strategy than learning by passive viewing. Repeated measures ANOVAs showed that when learning by using a generative learning strategy, students exhibited increased frontal and occipital-parietal lower alpha and upper alpha power, both while watching the video lectures and generating/viewing a sentence. The two learning strategy conditions showed a larger difference in upper alpha power than in lower alpha power. Correlation analyses showed that students’ alpha power in the generative learning strategy condition was positively related to their reaction time. Based on the learning performance tests, generative learning is more effective than passive learning from video lectures; based on the EEG results, the effectiveness appears to be due to students being primed to apply a top-down processing strategy. The findings have an important practical implication: instructors can encourage students to engage in generative learning after viewing video lectures.

Short pedagogical training in supporting university teachers’ professional vision: A comparison of prospective and current faculty teachers

2 weeks 4 days ago
Abstract

This study investigates the effects of a short pedagogical training on university teachers’ professional vision and (mis)conceptions concerning teaching and learning, utilizing a mixed-methods approach. Participants’ written interpretations of a video-based teaching–learning situation were analyzed and comparisons were made between prospective and current faculty teachers. Before the course, participants missed almost half of the pedagogically relevant incidents in a classroom. Generally, the short pedagogical training was successful in supporting all participants’ professional vision development. The training successfully provided all teachers’ with more in-depth reasoning skills as a result of the course. Thus, improvements in participants’ reasoning skills were identified, but interestingly not in their noticing capability. In addition, prospective teachers had more misconceptions concerning teaching and learning both before and after the training. Finally, the study discusses the implications for research on how teachers’ beliefs and conceptions are related to professional vision.

Teaching sourcing during online inquiry – adolescents with the weakest skills benefited the most

1 month 1 week ago
Abstract

Sourcing - identifying, evaluating, and using information about the sources of information - assists readers in determining what to trust when seeking information on the Internet. To survive in the post-truth era, students should be equipped with sufficient sourcing skills. This study investigated the efficacy of a teacher-led intervention aimed at fostering upper secondary school students’ (N = 365) sourcing during online inquiry. The intervention (4 × 75 min) was structured in accordance with the phases of online inquiry: locating, evaluating, synthesizing, and communicating information. During the intervention, teachers demonstrated why and how to source, and students practiced sourcing by investigating a controversial topic on the Internet. Students worked in small groups and their work was supported with analysis and reflection prompts. Students’ sourcing skills were measured with a web-based online inquiry task before and after the intervention. Compared to controls, the intervention fostered students’ abilities in three of the four skills measured (sourcing in search queries, credibility judgments, and written product). Depending on the sourcing skill, 4–25% of students showed improved performance. The students with low sourcing skills to begin with, benefited the most from the intervention. The study demonstrated that students’ sourcing skills can be supported throughout online inquiry.

Classifying Examples is More Effective for Learning Relational Categories Than Reading or Generating Examples

2 months ago
Abstract

Successful teaching requires that student teachers acquire a conceptual understanding of teaching practices. A promising way to promote such a conceptual understanding is to provide student teachers with examples. We conducted a 3 (between-subjects factor example format: reading, generation, classification) x 4 (within-subjects factor type of knowledge: facts, concepts, principles, procedures) experiment with N = 83 student teachers to examine how different formats of learning with examples influence the acquisition of relational categories in the context of lesson planning. Classifying provided examples was more effective for conceptual learning than reading provided examples or generating new examples. At the same time, reading provided examples or generating new examples made no difference in conceptual learning. However, generating new examples resulted in overly optimistic judgments of conceptual learning whereas reading provided examples or classifying provided examples led to rather accurate judgments of conceptual learning. Regardless of example format, more complex categories were more difficult to learn than less complex categories. The findings indicate that classifying provided examples is an effective form of conceptual learning. Generating examples, however, might be detrimental to learning in early phases of concept acquisition. In addition, learning with examples should be adapted to the complexity of the covered categories.

How do higher education students regulate their learning with video modeling examples, worked examples, and practice problems?

2 months ago
Abstract

Presenting novices with examples and problems is an effective and efficient way to acquire new problem-solving skills. Nowadays, examples and problems are increasingly presented in computer-based learning environments, in which learners often have to self-regulate their learning (i.e., choose what type of task to work on and when). Yet, it is questionable how novices self-regulate their learning from examples and problems, and to what extent their choices match with effective principles from instructional design research. In this study, 147 higher education students had to learn how to solve problems on the trapezoidal rule. During self-regulated learning, they were free to select six tasks from a database of 45 tasks that varied in task format (video examples, worked examples, practice problems), complexity level (level 1, 2, 3), and cover story. Almost all students started with (video) example study at the lowest complexity level. The number of examples selected gradually decreased and task complexity gradually increased during the learning phase. However, examples and lowest level tasks remained relatively popular throughout the entire learning phase. There was no relation between students' total score on how well their behavior matched with the instructional design principles and learning outcomes, mental effort, and motivational variables.

Do medium and Context Matter when learning from multiple complementary Digital texts and videos?

2 months ago
Abstract

Students more than ever learn from online sources, such as digital texts or videos. Little research has compared processes and outcomes across these two mediums. Using a between-participants experimental design, this study investigated whether medium (texts vs. videos) and context (less authoritative vs. more authoritative), independently and in concert, affected students’ engagement, integrated understanding, and calibration. The two mediums presented identical information on the topic of social media, which was distributed across two complementary texts in the text condition and across two complementary videos in the video condition. In the less authoritative context, the two information sources (texts or videos) were posted by a friend on Facebook; in the more authoritative context, the same information sources (texts or videos) were posted by a professor on Moodle. Results showed a main effect of medium on behavioral engagement in terms of processing time, as students used longer time watching the two videos than reading the two digital texts. No other main medium or context effects were statistically significant; nor were there any interaction effects of medium with context on any of the outcome variables. The findings are discussed in light of the alternative hypotheses that guided the study and the directions it suggests for future research.

How to assist the students while learning from text? Effects of inserting adjunct questions on text processing

2 months ago
Abstract

This study analyzes the effect of text-inserted questions and post-text-reading questions, i.e., questions timing, on students’ processing and learning when studying challenging texts. Seventy-six freshmen read two science texts and answered ten adjunct questions with the text available, being tested on learning 5 days afterwards. Questions were presented either after reading the whole text or inserted in the text after reading the relevant information. Online processing data were recorded while reading and searching the texts, and measures of processing strategies (i.e., paraphrases, elaborations) while answering the questions were collected. Compared to students in the post-reading condition, those in the inserted condition spent more time reading the text initially, were more efficient at searching for information in the text, and produced more accurate elaborations, all of which may explain why answering inserted questions in an available text were more effective in terms of learning than answering post-reading questions. Limitations and educational implications of these results are also discussed.

Localizing, describing, interpreting: effects of different audio text structures on attributing meaning to digital pictures

2 months ago
Abstract

Based on previous research on multimedia learning and text comprehension, an eye-tracking study was conducted to examine the influence of audio text coherence on visual attention and memory in a multimedia learning situation with a focus on picture comprehension. Audio text coherence was manipulated by the type of LDI structure, that is, whether localization, description, and interpretation followed in immediate succession for each pictorial detail or whether localizations and description of details were separated from their interpretation. Results show that with a LDI integrated structure compared to a LDI separated structure the referred-to picture elements were fixated longer during interpretation parts, and linkages between descriptions and interpretations were better recalled and recognized. The effects on recall and recognition of linkages were fully mediated by fixation times. This pattern of results can be explained by an interplay between audio text coherence and dual coding processes. It points out the importance of local coherence and the provision of localization information in audio explanations as well as visual attention to allow for dual coding processes that can be used to better attribute meaning to picture details. Practical implications for the design of educational videos, audio texts on websites, and audio guides are discussed.

Investigating factors affecting student academic achievement in mathematics and science: cognitive style, self-regulated learning and working memory

2 months ago
Abstract

Studies indicate that learners’ cognitive style (CS), self-regulated learning (SRL), and working memory (WM) are associated with their academic performance. These studies describe the relationship of academic achievement with SRL, CS, or WM individually or pairwise relationships between SRL, CS, and WM rather than the overall relationship between academic achievement and each factor. In this study, a structural equation modelling (SEM) analysis was conducted to explore the overall theoretical relationship. We focused on academic achievements in mathematics and science (AAMS). A total of 191 sixth-grade students (male: 111, female: 80; mean age: 11.08 years, SD = 0.282) from two public elementary schools in Taiwan was selected as valid samples for this study. The findings indicated that CS, WM, and SRL individually had significant influences on AAMS, among which SRL had the largest effect, followed by WM and CS. Furthermore, we discovered that CS was significantly correlated with WM. The results of the analysis of the mediation effect demonstrated that CS both directly affected AAMS and indirectly affected AAMS through SRL. The implication of the findings and recommendations are also discussed.

Embedding self-explanation prompts to support learning via instructional video

2 months ago
Abstract

Instructional videos have been widely used in online learning environments. Effective video learning requires self-regulation by learners, which can be facilitated by deliberate instructional design, such as through prompting. Grounded in the interactive, constructive, active, and passive (ICAP) framework, this study compared the effects of explanation prompts and explored how they affected the retention and transfer of learning. In an online experiment, 103 participants were randomly assigned to focused self-explanation, scaffolded self-explanation, and instructional explanation prompting conditions. The results indicated better retention performance from the scaffolded prompt than from the focused prompt. No differences were found in transfer performance across various forms of prompts. Regression analysis suggested that prior knowledge and cognitive load may have interacted with the effect of self-explanation prompts. Prior knowledge positively predicted transfer performance, and cognitive load negatively predicted transfer performance when focused or scaffolded prompts were implemented. Potential explanations concerning how self-explanation prompts affect learning were discussed.