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ERIC Number: EJ823174
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1042-1629
Computer-Supported Aids to Making Sense of Scientific Articles: Cognitive, Motivational, and Attitudinal Effects
Gegner, Julie A.; Mackay, Donald H. J.; Mayer, Richard E.
Educational Technology Research and Development, v57 n1 p79-97 Feb 2009
High school students can access original scientific research articles on the Internet, but may have trouble understanding them. To address this problem of online literacy, the authors developed a computer-based prototype for guiding students' comprehension of scientific articles. High school students were asked to read an original scientific research article about the effects of drug or alcohol abuse, which was presented on a computer screen either with computer-based comprehension aids or without aids. The aids provided background text and animations including answers given by the article authors. Across two experiments involving different schools and different research articles, the comprehension aids group performed better than the control group on a comprehension test concerning the article (d = +0.79 in Experiment 1 and d = +0.82 in Experiment 2) and rated the content of article as less difficult to read (d = +0.96 in Experiment 1 and d = +0.69 in Experiment 2). In addition, the comprehension aids group reported more positive motivational beliefs than the control group concerning understanding what scientists do (d = +0.51 in Experiment 1 and d = +0.56 in Experiment 2), appraising the article as worthwhile (d = +0.80 for Experiment 1 and d = +0.70 for Experiment 2), and being interested in reading another research article (d = +0.19 in Experiment 1 and d = +0.58 in Experiment 2). The groups did not differ on their attitudes concerning a career as a scientist or about alcohol and drug abuse. Overall, computer-based comprehension aids can help guide students' comprehension processes for an original scientific research article, which in turn can improve their appreciation of what scientists do.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A