Last week was Christmas in my publication world. I learned that two articles on which I was coauthor have been published. I wish I could send a link to the actual articles for you to read or attach them but that is one of those funny things about publishing- you sign away some rights when you publish in some academic journals. The effect is that fewer people will actually read the material than would if published in the commons. Another funny thing in this strange world of academia is that articles published in the commons are not viewed with as much value as those protected by passwords so you get less credit in academia for open publications. That being said, they are both available online through any university library service that subscribes to Computers in the Schools and Computers & Education. I have provided abstracts of both articles here with links to the journal sites. I would be happy to talk with anyone who finds either of these remotely interesting and would like to know more about the work.
Note-Taking and Memory in Different Media Environments
Lin, L., & Bigenho, C. (2011). Note-taking and memory in different media environments. Computers in the Schools. 28(3), 200-216.
Through this study the authors investigated undergraduate students’ memory recall in three media environments with three note-taking options, following an A x B design with nine experiments. The three environments included no-distraction, auditory-distraction, and auditory–visual-distraction; while the three note-taking options included no-note-taking, taking-notes-on-paper, and taking-notes-on-computer. The results of word recalls from 21 participants showed significant interactions between media environments and note-taking options. In the no-distraction environment, the participants had better word recall taking notes on paper than taking notes on computer or not taking notes. However, in the auditory–visual-distraction environment, the participants had better word recall with no note taking than taking notes on computer or taking notes on paper. The participants’ comments provided insights for implications for learning in different media environments.
Opening The Door: An evaluation of the efficacy of a problem-based learning game
Warren, S., Dondlinger, M., McLeod, J. & Bigenho, C. (2011). Opening The Door: An evaluation of the efficacy of a problem-based learning game. Computers & Education. V58(1), 397-412.
As higher education institutions seek to improve undergraduate education, initiatives are underway to target instructional methods, re-examine curricula, and apply innovative technologies to better engage students with content. This article discusses the findings of an exploratory study focused on a course redesign that game elements, PBL methods, and 3-D communication tools in an introductory computing course. Some of these findings included an appreciation for how the technology skills gained in the course applied to the world of work, an understanding of the significant role that interpersonal communications play in learning and in career success, a sense of empowerment fostered by access to resources, and an increased willingness to play, explore, and experiment with tools, content, and design processes.