Dynamic learning patterns during individualized instruction
Li-Chung Roger Yin, Indiana University, United States
Indiana University . Awarded
The present study sought to identify dynamic learning patterns when students were learning to use a computer software presentation program. Twelve participating students from a midwest regional university were selected through a screening process using Kolb's Learning Style Inventory. The participants were expected to create three electronic slides during the learning process. They were told that there was no time constraint and that they could freely use the printed jumpstart instructions, the video demonstration parallel to the printed instructions, and the user manual and tutorial. They then created a fourth slide without instruction as the post test. Learning sessions were recorded on video, and participants subsequently watched their own videos and were interviewed using think-aloud methodology. Multiple observers watched the videotapes of the learning performances for patterns of interaction, which were illuminated by the think-aloud interviews. Five learning patterns emerged: (1) following through error correction, (2) confirming actions, (3) hand on mouse, (4) keeping up step-by-step with the video instruction, and (5) trying new steps. Using analysis of patterns in time (APT), a methodology that can code event changes over time, the frequencies and the amounts of time of the five learning patterns were calculated. The data derived from the APT scores indicated two major findings: (1) The amount of time used by the participants ranged from 20 to 87 minutes. The amount of time spent did not predict mastery of the post test. (2) ‘Following through error corrections’, ‘confirming actions’, and ‘trying new steps’ were the patterns that did appear to predict mastery, and the other two patterns were indicators of learners' task engagement. The findings suggest that it is important to design flexible instruction to facilitate repeated, persistent, and successful practice in order to achieve mastery in a self-paced, computer-based learning environment, regardless of the amount of time spent.
Yin, L.C.R. Dynamic learning patterns during individualized instruction. Ph.D. thesis, Indiana University.
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