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ERIC Number: ED558640
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 177
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: 978-1-3032-6172-5
Designing Interactions for Learning: Physicality, Interactivity, and Interface Effects in Digital Environments
Hoffman, Daniel L.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Teachers College, Columbia University
The purpose of the study is to better understand the role of physicality, interactivity, and interface effects in learning with digital content. Drawing on work in cognitive science, human-computer interaction, and multimedia learning, the study argues that interfaces that promote physical interaction can provide "conceptual leverage" (Resnick, 2002, p. 35) to learners. To explore this idea, the study examined three factors related to interaction: modality, movement type, and input method, hypothesizing that adding kinesthetic interaction to visual interaction will heighten learning over visual interactions alone, that continuous movement will enhance learning over discrete movement, and that a touchscreen input method will improve learning over a mouse input method. One hundred ninety (N = 190) adults were asked to learn novel geometric figures of varying complexity. Participants interacted with the figures using various modalities, movements, and input devices. Their goal was to learn the size, shape, position, and name of the figures. After training, participants were asked to complete discrimination and recall tasks. The findings suggest that the presence of kinesthetic interaction neither enhanced nor hindered learning of the geometric figures as measured by discrimination and recall tasks. However, when kinesthetic interactions involving different movement types were compared, significant differences were found favoring continuous over discrete movements. Furthermore, a main effect of input method on learning was found, favoring the touchscreen input method over the mouse input method. In short, participants learning through touchscreen interactions outperformed participants learning with traditional computer mice on every aspect of the discrimination and recall tasks, regardless of content complexity. The study concludes that the design of interactions for leaning needs further exploration by educational researchers. More specifically, it is argued that future work should examine the possibilities of a kinesthetic continuum and cross-modal interactions. Finally, the work encourages educational researchers to explore the potential of new interaction technologies as they are poised to expand models of cognition and learning, as well as to redefine the design of future learning environments. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A