Students’ Deep and Surface Approach: Links to Interaction in Learning Environments

  • Maria MargetiEmail author
  • Manolis Mavrikis
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9307)


This paper presents the initial results of a study where we embrace and test Entwistle’s theory in order to explain the students’ interaction when using interactive learning environments (ILEs) in real conditions. In contrast to others who seek ways of adapting a system to students’ specific learning style, our aim is to find ways of designing an ILE that encourages students’ adoption of a deep approach to studying and discourages a surface approach. In this paper we focus only on the relationship between two subscales of the Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students (the deep subscale of interest in ideas and surface subscale of fear of failure), and metrics occurring from usage in a specific ILE. The results point to insights for instructors regarding the integration of ILEs in classrooms, as well as suggestions regarding the design of features which encourage a deep approach to studying.


Deep and surface approach to studying Fear of failure Intrinsic motivation Entwistle’s approaches and study skills inventory for students 



We would like to acknowledge: the ActiveMath group for the help and support in pre-processing the log files; Harvey Mellar for supervising part of the work; and Vasos Pavlikas for providing the math content for AM.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of WestminsterLondonUK
  2. 2.UCL-Institute of EducationLondonUK

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