An investigation of interactivity and flow: student behaviour during online instruction
AuthorPEARCE, JON MALCOLM
AffiliationScience: Department of Information Systems
Department of Information Systems
Document TypePhD thesis
CitationsPearce, J. M. (2004). An investigation of interactivity and flow: student behaviour during online instruction. PhD thesis, Department of Information Systems, The University of Melbourne.
Access StatusOpen Access
© 2004 Jon Malcolm Pearce.
This thesis combines ideas from human-computer interaction, education and psychology to explore the interactions of students in an online learning environment. The motivation for the work was to understand better how to engage students in a highly enjoyable experience of online learning. The thesis describes three experiments. The first experiment was an exploratory study investigating the influence of learner interactions in an online physics learning task. Students worked through an online learning experience that offered high and low levels of interactivity. The aim was to explore their interactions and choices in an environment in which they could elect to move from the highly interactive mode to the less interactive mode at any time. Web logs were used to track their interactions and question probes gathered data on their emotions, learning goals and strategies. The analysis revealed a number of different patterns of interaction. Statistical analysis showed that most, but not all, preferred to follow an interactive path through the material. Students who used the interactive materials showed improved learning gains in transfer-style questions compared to those in the less interactive mode. Several issues were identified as important to consider in a follow-up study: emotions, affect, challenge, and the degree of control that the learner perceives.
Keywordsinteractivity; online learning; flow; optimal experience; multimedia; human-computer interaction; affect
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