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Computers & Education
Journal Prestige (SJR): 2.626
Citation Impact (citeScore): 6
Number of Followers: 220  
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
ISSN (Print) 0360-1315 - ISSN (Online) 0360-1315
Published by Elsevier Homepage  [3206 journals]
  • The impact of learner-, instructor-, and course-level factors on online
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Binbin Zheng, Chin-Hsi Lin, Jemma Bae KwonAbstractThe number of K-12 students taking online courses has been increasing tremendously over the past few years. However, most research on online learning either compares its overall effectiveness to that of traditional learning, or examines perceptions or interactions using self-reported data; and very few studies have looked into the relationships between the elements of K-12 online courses and their students’ learning outcomes. Based on student-, instructor-, and course-level data from 919 students enrolled in eight online high-school English language and literature courses, the results of hierarchical linear modeling and content analysis found that project-based assignments and high-level knowledge activities were beneficial to learning outcomes – though not necessarily among students who took these courses for credit-recovery purposes. The paper also discusses implications for both online course-design practices and future research on predictors of online-learning success.
  • Educational technology conditions to support the development of digital
           age skills
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Brandon Olszewski, Helen Crompton
  • Explaining Chinese university students’ continuance learning intention
           in the MOOC setting: A modified expectation confirmation model perspective
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Hai Min Dai, Timothy Teo, Natasha Anne Rappa, Fang HuangAbstractTo gain more insight into the issue of high dropout rate in MOOC learning, this study aims at exploring the factors underlying the continuance intention to learn in the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) setting. By modifying and extending the Expectation Confirmation Model (ECM), the authors propose a research model that includes cognitive and affective variables, captures reflections of the past and expectations for the future and takes into account both intrinsic and extrinsic motives in the model construction to explain learners' intention to persist in learning a MOOC. The proposed model was tested with data from Chinese university students. The results show that the proposed model can explain 48% of continuance intention. The new variables (attitude and curiosity) added to the ECM were all found to be significant in explaining continuance intention. This study deepens our understanding of the development of learners' continuance intention in the MOOC setting in the following aspects: (a) although the personal trait, curiosity, was found to predict subsequent continuance intention, attitude played a considerably dominant role. In addition to respecting individual differences, practitioners can devise appropriate interventions to change attitudes and influence learners' retention in MOOCs; (b) the strong link between confirmation and both satisfaction and attitude suggests that MOOC instructors or designers must be prudent in advertising the courses to avoid exaggerating their benefits and the system's affordances.
  • Can tablet apps support the learning of handwriting' An investigation
           of learning outcomes in kindergarten classroom
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Nathalie Bonneton-Botté, Sylvain Fleury, Nathalie Girard, Maëlys Le Magadou, Anthony Cherbonnier, Mickaël Renault, Eric Anquetil, Eric JametAbstractDigital technologies are increasingly being used to support school learning, but few studies have assessed the effectiveness of these new teaching methods for very young students. The aim of the present study was to assess the impact of implementing a digital notebook application designed for a stylus-oriented tablet in kindergarten classrooms. This digital notebook was dedicated to the acquisition of handwriting skills by beginning writers. Using artificial intelligence to finely analyze the spatiotemporal characteristics of handwriting (i.e., shape, order and direction of the segments), the exercises were personalized, and extrinsic feedback was delivered at the end of each trial to inform learners of their results. A total of 22 kindergarten classes participated in a 12-week teacher-implemented program, half working exclusively with paper and pencil, and half partially undertaking their handwriting training with the digital notebook. A paper-and-pen writing task was administered as a pre-test and post-test to assess the progress of all the children. Data analysis showed that learning outcomes with the digital notebook were contingent upon the students' initial handwriting level, as the benefits of training with the app were only demonstrated for children with a medium level at the start of the study. The results are discussed in the light of the literature on the impact of extrinsic feedback and learners’ initial levels.
  • Difficulties with design: The challenges of teaching design in K-5
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 12 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Jane Waite, Paul Curzon, William Marsh, Sue SentenceAbstractTeachers in England are required to ensure that learners from the age of five are taught about algorithms and program design. Yet, there is evidence that despite teachers reporting that design is important, they are not converting this into classroom practice. This paper describes a survey study, in which we explored teachers’ difficulties in using design. We surveyed 207 teachers asking them free-text questions on their use of design in teaching programming and their views of pupils’ responses to using design. In the survey, we also investigated teachers’ understanding of the term algorithm, an essential concept which may be a contributing factor in their difficulties with design. We provide underpinning data on the difficulties of using design that teachers of pupils aged from 5 to 11 years old (Grades K to 5) have in teaching programming. Difficulties with design identified include pupil resistance, a lack of time, a lack of pupil and teacher expertise, conflicting pedagogical choices and a general confusion over what an algorithm is. There were statistically significant differences in selection of the term ‘algorithm’ to describe programming artefacts whether a teacher was a specialist or a generalist, what training they had received on programming or design, the age group taught and programming language used. Teachers were more likely to call a complex code snippet an ‘algorithm’ than a simpler one and more likely to select the term to describe code snippets than a design artefact. We make suggestions of how to alleviate the problems including that teachers are introduced to the idea of ambiguous representations of algorithms and process which refines the representation from ambiguous to unambiguous as the design progresses.
  • Comparing synchronous and asynchronous online discussions for students
           with disabilities: The impact of social presence
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Ibrahim Dahlstrom-Hakki, Zachary Alstad, Manju BanerjeeAbstractThe affordances of online learning have the potential to improve learning outcomes for students with disabilities by allowing customization and flexibility to meet individual needs. However, there are significant executive function and language processing demands that may be particularly challenging for this population. With that in mind, interventions guided by social presence theory may increase students' ability to engage in online settings. This study implemented a computer mediated, blended classroom setting in order to assess students’ understanding of statistics concepts following synchronous and asynchronous online, video-based discussion sessions. Social presence theory predicts that the immediacy of synchronous interactions should improve social presence, thereby increasing student engagement and performance. Data was collected from 105 students with high-incidence disabilities using a mixed methods experimental design with a within subjects quantitative component. Our findings indicate that while students with disabilities expressed preference for synchronous discussions, including self-reported greater engagement and self-reported improved comprehension, their performance on assessments of conceptual understanding was slightly better following asynchronous discussions. Implications for these disparities between preference and performance are discussed.
  • Challenges to assessing motivation in MOOC learners: An application of an
           argument-based approach
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Kerrie A. Douglas, Hillary E. Merzdorf, Nathan M. Hicks, Muhammad Ihsanulhaq Sarfraz, Peter BermelWhile data for examining learner activity are abundant, there are relatively little frameworks for principled interpretation of the behavior. Through application of Kane's argument-based approach to assessment validation, the authors conducted several analyses to combine motivation assessment with online behavioral data for further validating inferences made about MOOC learners. The EVC motivation scale was administered to learners in three advanced engineering MOOCs, and event log data was collected from the online learning platform. The EVC items were comprehensively examined (n = 661) through factor analysis, item response theory, and linear regression. Results indicated that the instrument retained a three-factor structure as well as strict and structural invariance across age groups and education levels, but the Expectancy and Value items suffered from significant ceiling effects, a key difficulty in assessing motivation using this approach. As part of a regression model with learners' intentions, EVC scores did not account for a significant amount of variance in learners' assessment outcomes and course behavior. Challenges remain for adjusting to learners' high expectancy and value of courses at the beginning, and for fully understanding how scores relate to learner behavior.Graphical abstractImage 1
  • Technological impact on language anxiety dynamic
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Li Xiangming, Meihua Liu, Chengping ZhangAbstractInsufficient information was generated from the existing literature of cross-sectional studies about the changes of language learning anxiety, especially in technology-assisted language settings. This paper filled the gap by designing a longitudinal study of 10 weeks in which the mobile learning apps of Rain Classroom was administered to 158 postgraduate students in language class. Quantitative results were generated, using paired samples T-test and one-way repeated measures ANOVA, from the 5-point Likert scale of English Language Class Anxiety Scale, 7-point scale recall of anxiety changes across 4 weeks, pre- and post-test language performance, combined with the qualitative interview transcripts administered before and after the learning process. In consistency with prior findings, the study results produced a significant decrease in anxiety in general, corroborating the interview and the self-recalling measure results. Further, the self-recalled scale revealed a more complex pattern of anxiety with the general decreasing tendency mixed with the increasing trend between the last two weeks. This study implied that the binary approach of anxiety reduction was not sufficient for the big picture of fluctuations and variations of language anxiety. The combination of language outcome data reinforced the explanatory forces than a single-dimensional dataset.
  • Collaborating with ‘familiar’ strangers in mobile-assisted
           environments: The effect of socializing activities on learning EFL writing
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Dayu Jiang, Lawrence Jun ZhangAbstractLearners in computer- or mobile-assisted collaborative learning environments could remain anonymous or unfamiliar, as educators might not provide explicit socializing activities with the assumption that effective interactions could happen naturally in these situations. However, from the perspectives of social presence, it was hypothesized that for learners who were unfamiliar to their peers in online collaborative learning environments, performing explicit socializing activities prior to learning phases would help them have better learning performance, experience lower levels of working memory load, and experience higher levels of social presence than performing implicit socializing activities. This research was conducted to test the hypotheses with 60 participants. The results showed that providing explicit socializing activities to unfamiliar learners in mobile-assisted collaborative learning environments increased the level of social presence, facilitated their acquisition of complex cognitive skills such as EFL argument essay writing skills, and reduced the level of cognitive load in learning. These results are discussed in light of human cognitive architecture and the social presence theory.
  • Enhancing STEM competence by making electronic musical pencil for
           non-engineering students
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Chih-Chien Hu, Hui-Chin Yeh, Nian-Shing ChenAbstractSTEM education has received increasing attention in recent years. Researchers have indicated that STEM learning activities should be closely connected to real-world problems to facilitate students' learning and foster positive STEM attitudes. In response to this recommendation, this study aims to investigate the effectiveness of non-engineering students' making electronic musical pencil on their STEM competence. An instructional design based on knowledge, skills, and attitudes (KSA) enhancement framework was proposed. Data were collected from 22 non-engineering students, the experimental results show that the effect of making electronic musical pencil by adopting the KSA enhancement framework on non-engineering students not only produces positive STEM competence learning outcomes according to Bloom's taxonomy but also enhances learners' attitude changes towards STEM.
  • Formative assessment with interactive whiteboards: A one-year longitudinal
           study of primary students’ mathematical performance
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): I-Hua Chen, Jeffrey Hugh Gamble, Zeng-Han Lee, Qian-Lan FuAbstractThe popularity of interactive whiteboards (IWBs) has grown and, in many countries, are nearly ubiquitous. Nevertheless, a lack of training, among other factors, has led to teachers misusing, or even abandoning this technology. While IWBs should improve learning outcomes, few studies have evaluated the impact of long-term IWB-based instruction. The purpose of this study is to track changes in the mathematical performance through formative assessment (FA) for primary school students participating in an IWB Formative Assessment (FA) system, characterized by elements including feedback, social learning through discussions, agentive learning through personalized options, and game-based learning featuring among-group competition and within-group collaboration. A convenience sample of 178 s-grade students from the same grade (four classes) participated in the study, which lasted one school year. Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) was utilized to analyze data from the IWB system, revealing the following: (1) a significant correlation between students’ involvement in formative IWB activities and mathematics achievement (t = 6.52; p = 0.00); (2) no effect of gender on initial mathematics performance; (3) a significant role of student motivational goals on initial mathematics performance, with higher mastery-avoidance associated with better initial assessments (t = 2.02, p = 0.04) and higher performance-avoidance associated with lower initial assessments (t = −2.60, p = 0.03); (4) interaction between gender and linear change, with girls outperforming boys (t = −2.57, p = 0.01) in FA performance over time (although boys made advances on summative assessments); and (5) a negative interaction of mastery-avoidance with linear change, where higher levels of mastery-avoidance were associated with a greater decline in FA performance over time (t = −2.57, p = 0.01). In short, the research findings suggest that if teachers use IWB-based FA over a relatively long time, they must pay special attention to boys and those who hold high mastery-avoidance goals.
  • Teaching and learning with children: Impact of reciprocal peer learning
           with a social robot on children’s learning and emotive engagement
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 5 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Huili Chen, Hae Won Park, Cynthia BreazealAbstractPedagogical agents are typically designed to take on a single role: either as a tutor who guides and instructs the student, or as a tutee that learns from the student to reinforce what he/she knows. While both agent-role paradigms have been shown to promote student learning, we hypothesize that there will be heightened benefit with respect to students’ learning and emotional engagement if the agent engages children in a more peer-like way – adaptively switching between tutor/tutee roles. In this work, we present a novel active role-switching (ARS) policy trained using reinforcement learning, in which the agent is rewarded for adapting its tutor or tutee behavior to the child’s knowledge mastery level. To investigate how the three different child-agent interaction paradigms (tutee, tutor, and peer agents) impact children’s learning and affective engagement, we designed a randomized controlled between-subject experiment. Fifty-nine children aged 5–7 years old from a local public school participated in a collaborative word-learning activity with one of the three agent-role paradigms. Our analysis revealed that children’s vocabulary acquisition benefited from the robot tutor’s instruction and knowledge demonstration, whereas children exhibited slightly greater affect on their faces when the robot behaves as a tutee of the child. This synergistic effect between tutor and tutee roles suggests why our adaptive peer-like agent brought the most benefit to children’s vocabulary learning and affective engagement, as compared to an agent that interacts only as a tutor or tutee for the child. This work sheds light on how fixed role (tutor/tutee) and adaptive role (peer) agents support children’s cognitive and emotional needs as they play and learn. It also contributes to an important new dimension of designing educational agents – actively adapting roles based on the student’s engagement and learning needs.
  • Evaluation of a digital game-based reading training for German children
           with reading disorder
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 4 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Ruth Görgen, Sini Huemer, Gerd Schulte-Körne, Kristina MollAbstractTechnological tools have the potential to efficiently support learning performance in children and are therefore recognized as being beneficial for children with special needs, such as reading disorders. The present study investigated the effectivity of a novel digital game-based reading training in second- and third-grade children with reading disorder (N = 50) carried out in home environment over a short training period of eight to eleven weeks. Children were randomly assigned to either a training group (N = 25) receiving the digital game-based reading training or a control group performing digitalized mind games (N = 25). Results showed significant improvement of reading performance for trained word material and a trend for transfer effects to untrained words. The digital game-based reading training was also found to be highly motivating and feasible for use in home environment. This study extends existing knowledge about digital game-based reading support and underlines that using a multi-component reading approach combined with flow principles is beneficial for children with reading disorder. Furthermore, the evaluated program seems to be a promising addition for children who do not have access to individual reading support.
  • Students’ guided inquiry with simulation and its relation to school
           science achievement and scientific literacy
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 4 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Cai-Ting Wen, Chen-Chung Liu, Hsin-Yi Chang, Chia-Jung Chang, Ming-Hua Chang, Shih-Hsun Fan Chiang, Chih-Wei Yang, Fu-Kwun HwangAbstractThe study investigates the effect of an interactive simulation with embedded inquiry support, which was seamlessly embedded within the simulation, on students' scientific literacy and school science achievement, and explores the relationships among prior school science achievement, inquiry processes and scientific literacy. A total of 49 eighth-grade students at a public junior high school in northern Taiwan participated. Data collected include the students' pre- and post-scores for school science achievement, logging data that indicate their inquiry processes, and pretest, posttest, and delayed-test data that measure their scientific literacy. The results provide evidence that the designed simulation and inquiry support had a long-term effect on the students' scientific literacy. Replacing conventional teaching with inquiry activities did not harm the students' school science achievement performances. Moreover, compared to school science achievement, students' scientific literacy seems a better predictor of their inquiry behavior, especially in the aspect of making conclusions. Analyses of the students’ inquiry processes indicate that the so-called low science achieving students conducted more data analyses than the other students, and demonstrated adequate inquiry engagement. The students with middle level school science achievement demonstrated the most active engagement in inquiry and showed good gains of scientific literacy after the learning. These results indicate that a guided inquiry learning environment can support students with different levels of school science achievement to highly engage in science inquiry. Implications and future studies are discussed.
  • Computational thinking through unplugged activities in early years of
           Primary Education
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 3 February 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Javier del Olmo, Ramón Cózar-Gutiérrez, José Antonio González-CaleroAbstractThe inclusion of computational thinking (CT) in the classroom is something that the present and future society is demanding. However, this domain remains largely unexplored, especially in the first years of Primary Education. The purpose of this study is to evaluate whether the inclusion of the so-called unplugged activities favours the development of CT in the students of the early years of Primary Education. To this end, a quasi-experimental study has been carried out to explore the eventual benefit of a mixed approach that combines both unplugged and plugged-in activities. In particular, 84 s-graders students took part in the experiment. Three questions were evaluated: the development of their CT skills, their motivation towards the proposed instruction, and the influence of students' gender in the two previous areas. The intervention was designed on a selection of activities extracted from Code. org courses, and was divided into two phases, one in which one group worked with unplugged activities and the other with plugged-in activities, and a second where both groups worked with plugged-in activities. Analysing the three proposed questions through tests performed before, in between and after the instruction, it is concluded that the inclusion of unplugged activities in the instruction seems beneficial taking into account CT, motivation and gender.
  • The effect of using kahoot! for learning – A literature review
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 31 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Alf Inge Wang, Rabail TahirAbstractKahoot! is a game-based learning platform used to review students' knowledge, for formative assessment or as a break from traditional classroom activities. It is among the most popular game-based learning platforms, with 70 million monthly active unique users and used by 50% of US K-12 students. Since the platform was released in 2013, many studies have been published on the effect of using Kahoot! in the classroom, but so far, no systematic analysis of the results. This article presents the results of a literature review on the effect of using Kahoot! for learning and, more specifically, on how Kahoot! affects learning performance, classroom dynamics, students' and teachers' attitudes and perceptions, and students' anxiety. The literature review includes 93 studies, and the main conclusion is that Kahoot! can have a positive effect on learning performance, classroom dynamics, students' and teachers' attitudes, and students’ anxiety. However, there are also studies where Kahoot! has little or no effect. The main challenges mentioned by students include technical problems such as unreliable internet connections, hard to read questions and answers on a projected screen, not being able to change answer after submission, stressful time-pressure for giving answers, not enough time to answer, afraid of losing, and hard to catch up if an incorrect answer had been given. Further, the main challenges mentioned by teachers include getting the difficulty level of questions and answers right, problems related to network connectivity, scoring based on how quickly the students answer reducing student reflection and cause some students to guess without thinking, that some students can have a problem with failing a quiz, and some teachers find it challenging to use the technology.
  • Analyzing the influence of a visualization system on students’ emotions:
           An empirical case study
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 29 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Carmen Lacave, J. Ángel Velázquez-Iturbide, Maximiliano Paredes-Velasco, Ana I. Molina
  • Effects of a computer-based learning environment that teaches older adults
           how to install a smart home system
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Yang Hu, Rachel Min Wong, Olusola Adesope, Matthew E. TaylorAbstractIn this study, we examined the teaching effectiveness of three strategies (trial-and-error, textbook, and combination) via a computer-based learning environment (CBLE) that teaches smart-home installation (SHiB). One hundred and twenty-five participants were randomly assigned to one of the strategies and tested with SHiB CBLE. Findings revealed that participants in the combination condition performed significantly better than those in the textbook (control) group with medium effect-size (g = 0.70). Senior participants in the trial-and-error group performed significantly better than those in the control condition with large effect-size (g = 0.89). Younger participants in the combination condition performed significantly better than those in the control condition with medium effect-size (g = 0.70). Results suggest that the teaching strategies had differential effects due to age groups.
  • The Co-Creative approach to digital simulation games in social science
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Anna Sanina, Evgeniia Kutergina, Aleksey BalashovAbstractThis paper focuses on the educational possibilities and potential of digital simulation games in higher education. It provides the detailed examination of the true experimental design of a co-creative gamified classroom that could be used in different academic subjects in social science education. In this pedagogical experiment, we tested the effects of a co-creative gamification classroom within a Public Sector Economics course attended by 253 first-year master's students. We used pre-test and post-test examinations, surveys, and interviews to evaluate and compare effects on learning outcomes and course evaluations of different classroom modes (with and without a co-creative approach and digital simulation games). This paper presents a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the proposed experimental design, using treatment and control groups. Our conclusions make a contribution to the discussion of the co-creative approach in education, proving that its digital implementation can develop students' generic and professional skills. We also reveal a more conscious and motivated attitude toward the future profession of those students who participated in the process of creating the game.
  • Effects of a multi-level concept mapping-based question-posing approach on
           students’ ubiquitous learning performance and perceptions
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Gwo-Jen Hwang, Di Zou, Lin JiangAbstractThe literature indicates that the use of mobile devices, wireless communication and sensing techniques can enhance students' learning in authentic environments and improve their learning effectiveness. Good learning strategy guides are essential for successful inquiry learning, and the question-posing strategy has been acknowledged as a type of high-level cognitive strategy that plays an important role in facilitating students' knowledge integration in the inquiry learning process. However, question posing seems challenging for many students and may lead to heavy cognitive load when appropriate scaffolding is not available. To solve this problem, the present research imported a concept mapping knowledge representation model as an auxiliary strategy for question-posing activities based on the research finding that visual knowledge representations are conducive to high-order thinking. It also developed a ubiquitous learning system which integrated multilevel concept mapping and question-posing strategy guidance to investigate the application effects of this learning model. A quasi-experimental design was applied, and an experiment was conducted to measure 5th graders’ learning of a plant unit of the natural science curriculum. Students in the experimental group learned with the proposed ubiquitous learning system based on the multilevel concept mapping and question-posing approach, while those in the control group learned with the ubiquitous learning system based on the question-posing approach. The results showed that the students in the experimental group significantly outperformed those in the control group from the perspectives of learning achievement and question-posing performance, but no significance was found in their cognitive load, meta-cognitive awareness, and science learning strategies.
  • EmoFindAR: Evaluation of a mobile multiplayer augmented reality game for
           primary school children
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Lissette López-Faican, Javier JaenAbstractGames are powerful generators of positive emotions in children and are intrinsically satisfying. In this context, our work evaluates the use of mobile augmented reality without markers as the technology to implement a multiplayer game scenario that can be used to improve socialization, communication skills and emotional intelligence in primary school children. The present study addresses the usability of two gameplay styles and their impact on users' communication and motivation: competitive vs collaborative play. The game integrates Mobile Augmented Reality (MAR) technology without markers to create a geolocation scenario with unlimited physical space. The results indicate that both game modes are intrinsically satisfactory for children triggering positive emotions such as enthusiasm, enjoyment and curiosity that improve the participants’ mood and help increase the degree of involvement. Moreover, we observed that the collaborative game version has a greater impact on emotional affection, social interaction and interest. In addition, we observed in our study that the quality of the communication in the collaborative mode is good in terms of several factors such as sustaining mutual understanding, dialogue management, information pooling, reaching consensus, time management and reciprocal interaction. Finally, several design implications and suggestions related to game time management, scaffolding, mixed competitive-collaborative modes, dynamic 3D content and active learning, among others, are discussed. The present evaluation contributes to the identification of the most relevant aspects to be considered in the future design of MAR-based gamification strategies in education.
  • Mobile sensor-based community gaming for improving vocational students’
           sleep and academic outcomes
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Jeen-Hsing Wang, Jeffrey Hugh Gamble, Carolyn YangAbstractQuality sleep is critical for teenagers' physical and mental health and, consequently, learning achievement. Technology, particularly the use of mobile sensors and digital game-based learning, has the potential to enhance students' sleep hygiene, reducing insomnia and daytime sleepiness and improving students’ academic performance. Therefore, this study implemented and evaluated a sleep hygiene instruction intervention in terms of three elements: a) mobile sleep sensor data feedback for sleep self-evaluation; b) a collaborative-competitive mobile community game (MCG) for sleep promotion based on social-interdependence; and c) an instructional intervention adopting a social cognitive approach. To validate the efficacy of the instructional design, a pretest-posttest quasi-experiment was conducted with 114 10th grade students from three classes of an urban vocational high school in Taiwan. The three intact classes were randomly assigned to one of three sleep hygiene courses: a comparison group (37 students receiving sleep sensor feedback), experimental group one (E1; 38 students receiving sleep sensor feedback and adopting MCG), and experimental group two (E2; 39 students receiving sleep sensor feedback, adopting MCG, and taking a social cognitive-based course). The empirical results suggest that the use of sleep sensor feedback and the MCG (E1 and E2) effectively improved the sleep behaviors of vocational students. In fact, inclusion of the mobile sensor with feedback on sleep quality was sufficient to provide improvement in both sleep and academic outcomes for all students. These results demonstrate the promising potential of mobile community-based technological interventions for improving sleep hygiene, relieving insomnia daytime sleepiness, when integrated with either traditional or social cognitive-based sleep courses. Specific implications and recommendations for the development of technology-enhanced sleep-related or health promotion courses are provided.
  • The relation between academic achievement and the spontaneous use of
           design-thinking strategies
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 January 2020Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Maria Cutumisu, Daniel L. Schwartz, Nigel Mantou LouAbstractDesign-thinking strategies are believed to enhance performance and learning, but it is unclear whether these strategies have any relation to the types of learning measured by tests of academic achievement. This study examines the relations between students' prior academic achievement, their choices to use design-thinking strategies of seeking critical feedback and revising their work, and their learning during a 10-15-min on-line activity. Sixth-grade students designed three digital posters. After each poster, they had chances to seek either critical or confirmatory feedback, followed by a chance to revise the poster or not. Results show that prior academic achievement is positively related to students' spontaneous use of critical feedback-seeking and that critical feedback-seeking is positively associated with students’ performance on the poster design task through revising, regardless of prior academic achievement. Prior academic achievement indirectly predicts performance, first through critical feedback-seeking and then through revising. One possible interpretation is that students who exhibit higher academic achievement attained those levels because they had spontaneously employed these strategies during their academic studies. To test this claim, future work needs to determine if instruction in design-thinking strategies increases student academic achievement.
  • Engagement and performance when learning with technologies in upper
           secondary school
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 18 December 2019Source: Computers & EducationAuthor(s): Nina Bergdahl, Jalal Nouri, Uno Fors, Ola KnutssonAbstract:Students need to engage in order to learn. As digitalisation changes the conditions for learning, it is essential to consider how student engagement might be affected. This study explores the relationship between students' level of engagement in technology-enhanced learning (TEL) and academic outcomes. More specifically, we developed and validated an instrument LET (Learner–Technology–Engagement) using principal component analysis and confirmatory factor analysis, and distributed this to second and third year upper secondary school students. We then matched student responses (n = 410) with their school grades. Using a bivariate correlation test, a one-way ANOVA test, and a post hoc test, we analysed the associations between low-, average-, and high-performance students and their reported engagement and disengagement when learning with technologies. The analysis reveals that high-performance students find it easier to concentrate when working with learning technologies than do average and low performers. We also found significant correlations between low grades and reported time spent on social media and streaming media for other purposes than learning (e.g., YouTube). There were also significant correlations between a decrease in students’ performance and the occurrence of unauthorised multi-tasking via learning technologies while in class: the lower the grades, the more frequently students reported using digital technologies to escape when lessons were boring. Conclusively: high-performance students seem to develop strategies to use digital technologies in supportive and productive ways. Thus, in order for schools to use digital technologies to ensure that disadvantaged students do not remain disadvantaged when learning with technologies and to not replicate problems in analogue classroom interactions, insights how different performance groups engage and disengage in TEL is critical for learning.
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