ERIC Number: ED423300
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Using KIE To Help Students Develop Shared Criteria for House Designs.
Cuthbert, Alex; Hoadley, Christopher M.
How can students develop shared criteria for problems that have no "right" answer? Ill-structured problems of this sort are called design problems. Like portfolio projects, these problems are difficult to evaluate for both teachers and students. This investigation contrasts two methods for developing shared criteria for project evaluation. Elements of self-criticism and peer review appear in both methods with levels of collaboration altered between the two conditions. The investigation used the Scaffolded Knowledge Integration (SKI) framework to guide the curriculum design. The two approaches were an autonomous condition in which students worked in pairs on a single design and then critiqued their own designs and a collaborative condition in which students create separate initial designs and then merged them into one. Eighth graders (n=148) used the Knowledge Integration Environment (KIE) to design passive solar energy efficient houses for the desert. Results show that in both conditions students develop shared criteria in the sense that, as a group, they evaluate pieces of evidence to support their designs. However, the collaborative condition makes the need to evaluate alternatives visible to students. This increase in visibility may partially account for the increase in principled selection among alternatives in the collaborative condition. This effect appears to be strongest for students who do not distinguish between ideas such as heat and temperature. Ultimately, building shared criteria, through collaboration for some students and through autonomous activities for others, can scaffold students as they become more autonomous critical thinkers. (Contains two figures.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A