Advertisement

iSTART: Interactive strategy training for active reading and thinking

  • Danielle S. McNamaraEmail author
  • Irwin B. Levinstein
  • Chutima Boonthum
Article

Abstract

Interactive Strategy Training for Active Reading and Thinking (iSTART) is a Web-based application that provides young adolescent to college-age students with high-level reading strategy training to improve comprehension of science texts. iSTART is modeled after an effective, human-delivered intervention called self-explanation reading training (SERT), which trains readers to use active reading strategies to self-explain difficult texts more effectively. To make the training more widely available, the Web-based trainer has been developed. Transforming the training from a human-delivered application to a computer-based one has resulted in a highly interactive trainer that adapts its methods to the performance of the students. The iSTART trainer introduces the strategies in a simulated classroom setting with interaction between three animated characters—an instructor character and two student characters— and the human trainee. Thereafter, the trainee identifies the strategies in the explanations of a student character who is guided by an instructor character. Finally, the trainee practices self-explanation under the guidance of an instructor character. We describe this system and discuss how appropriate feedback is generated.

Keywords

Work Memory Capacity Latent Semantic Analysis Content Word Target Sentence Reading Strategy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Baker, L. (1996). Social influences on metacognitive development in reading. In C. Cornoldi & J. Oakhill (Eds.),Reading comprehension difficulties (pp. 331–352). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  2. Baumann, J. F., Seifert-Kessell, N., &Jones, L. A. (1992). Effect of think-aloud instruction on elementary students’ comprehension monitoring abilities. Journal of Reading Behavior,24, 143–172.Google Scholar
  3. Bereiter, C., &Bird, M. (1985). Use of thinking aloud in identification and teaching of reading comprehension strategies.Cognition & Instruction,2,131–156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Best, R., Ozuru, Y., & McNamara, D. S. (in press). Self-explaining science texts: Strategies, knowledge and reading skill.Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference of the Learning Sciences.Google Scholar
  5. Bielaczyc, K., Pirolli, P. L., &Brown, A. L. (1995). Training in self-explanation and regulation strategies: Investigating the effects of knowledge acquisition activities on problem solving.Cognition & Instruction,13,221–252.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bowen, B. A. (1999). Four puzzles in adult literacy: Reflections on the national adult literacy survey. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy,42, 314–323.Google Scholar
  7. Bransford, J., &Johnson, M. K. (1972). Contextual prerequisites for understanding some investigations of comprehension and recall.Journal of Verbal Learning & Verbal Behavior,11,717–726.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Brown, A. (1982). Learning how to learn from reading. In J. A. Langer & M. T. Smith-Burke (Eds.),Reader meets author: Bridging the gap (pp. 26–54). Newark, DE: International Reading Association.Google Scholar
  9. Chi, M. T. H., Bassok, M., Lewis, M. W., Reimann, P., &Glaser, R. (1989). Self-explanations: How students study and use examples in learning to solve problems.Cognitive Science,13,145–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Chi, M. T. H., de Leeuw, N., Chiu, M., &LaVancher, C. (1994). Eliciting self-explanations improves understanding.Cognitive Science,18,439–477.Google Scholar
  11. Cottrell, K., &McNamara, D. S. (2002). Cognitive precursors to science comprehension. In W. D. Gray & C. D. Schunn,Proceedings of the Twenty-Fourth Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 244–249). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  12. Cox, B. D. (1997). The rediscovery of the active learner in adaptive contexts: A developmental-historical analysis of transfer of training. Educational Psychologist,32, 41–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Craig, S., Gholson, B., Ventura, M., Graesser, A. C., &the Tutoring Research Group (2000). Overhearing dialogues and monologues in virtual tutoring sessions: Effects on questioning and vicarious learning. International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education,11, 242–253.Google Scholar
  14. Davey, B. (1983). Think aloud: Modeling the cognitive processes of reading comprehension. Journal of Reading,27, 44–47.Google Scholar
  15. Dewitz, P., Carr, E., &Patberg, J. (1987). Effects of interference training on comprehension and comprehension monitoring. Reading Research Quarterly,22, 99–121.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Ericsson, K. A., &Kintsch, W. (1995). Long-term working memory.Psychological Review,102,211–245.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Foltz, P. W., Gilliam, S., &Kendall, S. A. (2000). Supporting content-based feedback in online writing evaluations with LSA.Interactive Learning Environments,8,111–129.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Garner, R. (1990). When children and adults do not use learning strategies: Toward a theory of settings. Review of Educational Psychology,60, 517–529.Google Scholar
  19. Gernsbacher, M. A. (1990).Language comprehension as structure building. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  20. Gough, P. B., Hoover, W. A., &Peterson, C. L. (1996). Some observations on a simple view of reading. In C. Cornoldi & J. Oakhill (Eds.),Reading comprehension difficulties: Process and intervention (pp. 1–13). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  21. Graesser, A. C., Hu, X., & McNamara, D. S. (in press). Computerized learning environments that incorporate research in discourse psychology, cognitive science, and computational linguistics. In A. F. Healy (Ed.),Experimental cognitive psychology and its applications: Festschrift in honor of Lyle Bourne, Walter Kintsch, and Thomas Landauer. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  22. Graesser, A. C., Jackson, G. T., Mathews, E. C., Mitchell, H. H., Olney, A., Ventura, M., Chipman, P., Franceschetti, D., Hu, X., Louwerse, M. M., Person, N. K., &the Tutoring Research Group (2003). Why/AutoTutor: A test of learning gains from a physics tutor with natural language dialog. In R. Alterman & D. Hirsh (Eds.),Proceedings of the Twenty-Fifth Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 1–5). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  23. Graesser, A. C., Wiemer-Hastings, K., Wiemer-Hastings, P., Kreuz, R., &the Tutoring Research Group (1999). AutoTutor: A simulation of a human tutor.Journal of Cognitive Systems Research,1,35–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Graesser, A. C., Wiemer-Hastings, P., Wiemer-Hastings, K., Harter, D., Person, N., &the Tutoring Research Group (2000). Using latent semantic analysis to evaluate the contributions of students in AutoTutor.Interactive Learning Environments,8,129–147.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hansen, J., &Pearson, P. (1983). An instructional study: Improving the inferential comprehension of good and poor fourth-grade readers.Journal of Educational Psychology,75,821–829.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Just, M. A., &Carpenter, P. A. (1992). A capacity theory of comprehension: Individual differences in working memory.Psychological Review,99,122–149.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kintsch, W. (1998).Comprehension: A paradigm for cognition. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  28. Knuth, D. (1998).The art of computer programming (2nd ed., Vol. 3). Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar
  29. Landauer, T. K., &Dumais, S. T. (1997). A solution to Plato’s problem: The latent semantic analysis theory of acquisition, induction, and representation of knowledge.Psychological Review,104,211–240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Landauer, T. K., Foltz, P. W., &Laham, D. (1998). Introduction to latent semantic analysis. Discourse Processes,25, 259–284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Long, D. L., Oppy, B. J., &Seely, M. R. (1994). Individual differences in the time course of inferential processing.Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition,20,1456–1470.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. MacDonald, M. C., &Christiansen, M. H. (2002). Reassessing working memory: Comment on Just and Carpenter (1992) and Waters and Caplan (1996).Psychological Review,109,35–54.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Magliano, J. P., Dijkstra, K., &Zwaan, R. (1996). Generating predictive inferences while viewing a movie.Discourse Processes,22,199–224.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Magliano, J. P., &Millis, K. K. (2003). Assessing reading skill with a think-aloud procedure and latent semantic analysis. Cognition & Instruction,21, 251–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. McKendree, J., Stenning, K., Mayes, T., Lee, J., &Cox, R. (1998). Why observing a dialogue may benefit learning.Journal of Computer Assisted Learning,14,110–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. McNamara, D. S. (1997). Comprehension skill: A knowledge-based account. In M. G. Shafto & P. Langley (Eds.),Proceedings of the Nineteenth Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 508–513). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  37. McNamara, D. S. (2001). Reading both high-coherence and low-coherence texts: Effects of text sequence and prior knowledge.Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology,55,51 -62.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. McNamara, D. S. (in press). SERT: Self-explanation reading training.Discourse Processes.Google Scholar
  39. McNamara, D. S., Best, R., & Castellano, C. (2004). Learning from text: Facilitating and enhancing comprehension. Retrieved February 2004 fromwww.speechpathology.com.Google Scholar
  40. McNamara, D. S., de Vega, M., & O’Reilly, T. (in press). Comprehension skill, inference making, and the role of knowledge. In F. Schmalhofer & C. A. Perfetti (Eds.),Higher level language processes in the brain: Inference and comprehension processes. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  41. McNamara, D. S., Kintsch, E., Songer, N., &Kintsch, W. (1996). Are good texts always better? Interactions of text coherence, background knowledge, and levels of understanding in learning from text.Cognition & Instruction,14,1–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. McNamara, D. S., &Kintsch, W. (1996). Learning from texts: Effects of prior knowledge and text coherence.Discourse Processes,22,247–288.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. McNamara, D. S., &McDaniel, M. (2004). Suppressing irrelevant information: Knowledge activation or inhibition?Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition,30,465–482.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. McNamara, D. S., &Scott, J. L. (1999). Training reading strategies. In M. Hahn & S. C. Stoness (Eds.),Proceedings of the Twenty-First Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 387–392). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  45. McNamara, D. S., &Scott, J. L. (2001). Working memory capacity and strategy use.Memory & Cognition,29,10–17.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. McNamara, D. S., & the CSEP Lab (2004).Promoting active reading strategies to improve undergraduate students’ understanding of science. Annual project report submitted to the National Science Foundation IERI.Google Scholar
  47. Millis, K., Kim, H.-J. J., Todaro, S., Magliano, J. P., Wiemer-Hastings, K., &McNamara, D. S. (2004). Identifying reading strategies using latent semantic analysis: Comparing semantic benchmarks.Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, & Computers,36,213–221.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Oakhill, J. (1984). Inferential and memory skills in children’s comprehension of stories.British Journal of Educational Psychology,54, 31–39.Google Scholar
  49. Oakhill, J., &Yuill, N. (1996). Higher order factors in comprehension disability: Processes and remediation. In C. Cornoldi & J. Oakhill (Eds.),Reading comprehension difficulties: Processes and intervention (pp. 69–92). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  50. O’Reilly, T., &McNamara, D. S. (2002). What’s a science student to do? In W. P. Gray & C. D. Shunn (Eds.),Proceedings of the Twenty-Fourth Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 726–731). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  51. O’Reilly, T., Sinclair, G. P., & McNamara, D. S. (in press). Reading strategy training: Automated versus live. InProceedings of the 26th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.Google Scholar
  52. Palinscar, A. S., &Brown, A. L. (1984). Reciprocal teaching of comprehension-fostering and comprehension-monitoring activities.Cognition & Instruction,2, 117–175.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Paris, S., &Jacobs, J. (1984). The benefits of informed instruction for children’s reading awareness and comprehension skills.Child Development,55,2083–2093.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Pressley, M., &Ghatala, E. (1990). Self-regulated learning: Monitoring learning from text. Educational Psychologist,25, 19–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Pressley, M., Wood, E., Woloshyn, V., Martin, V., King, A., &Menke, D. (1992). Encouraging mindful use of prior knowledge: Attempting to construct explanatory answers facilitates learning. Educational Psychology,27, 91–109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Rosen, V., &Engle, R. (1998). Working memory capacity and suppression.Journal of Memory & Language,39,418–436.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Shapiro, A. M., &McNamara, D. S. (2000). The use of latent semantic analysis as a tool for the quantitative assessment of understanding and knowledge.Journal of Educational Computing Research,22,1–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Shebilske, W., Jordan, J., Goettl, B., &Paulus, L. (1998). Observation versus hands-on practice of complex skills in dyadic, triadic, and tetradic training-teams.Human Factors,40,525–540.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Snow, C. [E.] (2002).Reading for understanding: Toward an R&D program in reading comprehension. Santa Monica, CA: RAND.Google Scholar
  60. Snow, C. E., Burns, M., &Griffin, P. (1998).Preventing reading difficulties in young children. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.Google Scholar
  61. Spilich, G., Vesonder, G., Chiesi, H., &Voss, J. (1979). Text processing of domain-related information for individuals with high and low domain knowledge.Journal of Verbal Learning & Verbal Behavior,18,275–290.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Vygotsky, L. S. (1978).Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  63. Yuill, N., &Oakhill, J. (1988). Understanding of anaphoric relations in skilled and less skilled comprehenders.British Journal of Psychology,79,173–186.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Danielle S. McNamara
    • 1
    Email author
  • Irwin B. Levinstein
    • 2
  • Chutima Boonthum
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of MemphisMemphis
  2. 2.Old Dominion UniversityNorfolk

Personalised recommendations