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ERIC Number: EJ934162
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Nov
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0360-1315
The Synergetic Effect of Learning Styles on the Interaction between Virtual Environments and the Enhancement of Spatial Thinking
Hauptman, Hanoch; Cohen, Arie
Computers & Education, v57 n3 p2106-2117 Nov 2011
Students have difficulty learning 3D geometry; spatial thinking is an important aspect of the learning processes in this academic area. In light of the unique features of virtual environments and the influence of metacognitive processes (e.g., self-regulating questions) on the teaching of mathematics, we assumed that a combination of self-regulating questions and virtual environments would enhance spatial thinking through the exercise of certain spatial abilities with the VR Spaces 1.0 software. These two methods primarily focus on the cognitive domain. In terms of learning styles, we define different cognitive characteristics. The main objective of the present study was to examine whether students with a certain learning style would benefit more from this exercise than other students. To assess the effect of these methods, a sample of 192 10th graders were randomly assigned to four groups, two of which used Virtual Spaces 1.0 (Group 1 with virtual reality and self-regulating questions, N = 52; Group 2 with virtual reality only, N = 52) while the other two used non-Virtual Spaces 1.0 (Group 3 with self-regulating questions only, N = 45; Group 4 was the non-treatment group; N = 45). The findings indicate a differential impact of virtual environments on students with different modal and personal learning styles. The post-test scores for all students (except audio students on the Aptitude Profile Test Series--Educational) were significantly higher than the pre-test scores. The unique nature of this study's findings expresses itself in the fact that the "sensing" students (S type) scored higher than the "intuitive" students (N type) on the Mental Rotation Test group 2 alone. Additionally, the scores of the visual students were higher then those of the kinesthetic style but not significantly. These findings suggest that virtual environment decreases the gap in performance results between the visual and kinesthetic students and highlight the importance of virtual environments to the "sensing" and kinesthetic styles. (Contains 4 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A