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Examining Interaction Modality Effects Toward Engagement in an Interactive Learning Environment

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Data Driven Approaches in Digital Education (EC-TEL 2017)

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The primary goals of interactive learning environments (ILEs) are to improve student engagement and learning outcomes. In this paper, we examine different tablet-based user interaction strategies within the domain of analytical geometry (i.e., the intersection of algebra and geometry) that supports active learning for math problem solving. From a learning technology view, we ground our work using cognitive engagement theory and apply usability to evaluate and further infer user engagement by using different interaction metaphors. We propose two ILE features: (1) self-constructed graphing, which provides a Cartesian coordinate interface so that students can graph toward a solution and (2) system-generated graphing, where the ILE automatically translates written algebraic equations into their geometric equivalents. We recruited 24 college students and conducted a 2 × 2 mixed factorial experimental design by varying two levels (with & without) for each condition (self-constructed & system-generated graphing). We found that these two features combined optimally increased student engagement and solving performance. More importantly, letting students control multi-modal user interactions (given the self-constructed graphing feature) should be provided before introducing automated user interactions (given the system-generated graphing feature).

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This work is supported in part by NSF Award IIS-1638060, Lockheed Martin, Office of Naval Research Award ONRBAA15001, Army RDECOM Award W911QX13C0052, and Coda Enterprises, LLC. We thank the ISUE lab members at UCF for their support as well as the anonymous reviewers for their helpful feedback.

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Kang, B., LaViola, J.J., Wisniewski, P. (2017). Examining Interaction Modality Effects Toward Engagement in an Interactive Learning Environment. In: Lavoué, É., Drachsler, H., Verbert, K., Broisin, J., Pérez-Sanagustín, M. (eds) Data Driven Approaches in Digital Education. EC-TEL 2017. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 10474. Springer, Cham.

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