Relative effectiveness of human and computer-based feedback in a mastery context
Beryl Jean Mason, The University of Nebraska - Lincoln, United States
The University of Nebraska - Lincoln . Awarded
As post-secondary institutions move to keep up with advancing technology, there is a growing emphasis to incorporate computers into the classroom. The structure of mastery learning programs (repeatable testing with immediate feedback) makes them an ideal target for conversion to a computer-based format. Since computer-based testing provides an efficient means of managing a mastery learning course, many instructors are switching to computer-based formats with little consideration to the educational impact of this change. Specifically, there has been limited research surrounding the impact of computer-based testing and computer-based feedback compared to traditional testing and feedback provided by human proctors; in addition, there has been limited research on the educational benefits available through immediate, response-specific computer-based feedback. The purpose of this study was to examine the educational impact of presenting various levels of computer-based feedback (no-feedback, knowledge-of-response, knowledge-of-correct-response, topic-contingent, and response-contingent) either alone or paired with human discussions in an Introductory Psychology mastery teaming program. Results indicated that student learning was enhanced by live discussions but was not influenced by the various types of computer-based feedback. Generalizations based on the apparent lack of a computer-based feedback effect are discouraged, as the utilization of the computer-based feedback by students is unclear. Although the computer-based feedback did not impact student learning, students' reported enhanced attitudes in response to various forms of computer-based feedback. The results suggest that live interaction remains a critical element for student success in a mastery learning program.
Mason, B.J. Relative effectiveness of human and computer-based feedback in a mastery context. Ph.D. thesis, The University of Nebraska - Lincoln.
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