Do Erroneous Examples Improve Learning in Addition to Problem Solving and Worked Examples?

  • Xingliang Chen
  • Antonija Mitrovic
  • Moffat Mathews
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9684)


Learning from Problem Solving (PS), Worked Examples (WE) and Erroneous Examples (ErrEx) have all proven to be effective learning strategies. However, there is still no agreement on what kind of assistance (in terms of different learning activities) should be provided to students in Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITSs) to optimize learning. A previous study [1] found that alternating worked examples and problem solving (AEP) was superior to using just one type of learning tasks. In this paper, we compare AEP to a new instructional strategy which, in addition to PS and WEs, additionally offers erroneous examples to students. The results indicate that erroneous examples prepare students better for problem solving in comparison to worked examples. Explaining and correcting erroneous examples also leads to improved debugging and problem-solving skills.


Intelligent tutoring system Worked examples Erroneous examples Assistance Problem-solving SQL-Tutor 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xingliang Chen
    • 1
  • Antonija Mitrovic
    • 1
  • Moffat Mathews
    • 1
  1. 1.Intelligent Computer Tutoring GroupUniversity of CanterburyChristchurchNew Zealand

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