Integrating Cognitive Science and Technology Improves Learning in a STEM Classroom
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- Butler, A.C., Marsh, E.J., Slavinsky, J.P. et al. Educ Psychol Rev (2014) 26: 331. doi:10.1007/s10648-014-9256-4
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The most effective educational interventions often face significant barriers to widespread implementation because they are highly specific, resource intense, and/or comprehensive. We argue for an alternative approach to improving education: leveraging technology and cognitive science to develop interventions that generalize, scale, and can be easily implemented within any curriculum. In a classroom experiment, we investigated whether three simple, but powerful principles from cognitive science could be combined to improve learning. Although implementation of these principles only required a few small changes to standard practice in a college engineering course, it significantly increased student performance on exams. Our findings highlight the potential for developing inexpensive, yet effective educational interventions that can be implemented worldwide.