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ERIC Number: EJ785077
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Oct
Pages: 21
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1042-1629
Examining the Effect of Problem Type in a Synchronous Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL) Environment
Kapur, Manu; Kinzer, Charles K.
Educational Technology Research and Development, v55 n5 p439-459 Oct 2007
This study investigated the effect of well- vs. ill-structured problem types on: (a) group interactional activity, (b) evolution of group participation inequities, (c) group discussion quality, and (d) group performance in a synchronous, computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL) environment. Participants were 60 11th-grade science students working in three-member groups (triads) who were randomly assigned to solve a well- or an ill-structured problem scenario on Newtonian Kinematics. Although groups solving ill-structured problems generated more problem-centered interactional activity (a positive effect), they also exhibited participation patterns that were more inequitable (a negative effect) than groups solving well-structured problems. Interestingly, inequities in member participation patterns exhibited a high sensitivity to initial exchange and tended to get "locked-in" early in the discussion, ultimately lowering the quality of discussion and, in turn, the group performance. Findings and their implications for theory, methodology, and scaffolding of CSCL groups are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 6
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A