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ETR & D Archive

2005 Volumes
  * Vol. 53 No. 4
  * Vol. 53 No. 3
  * Vol 53 No. 2
  * Vol. 53 No. 1
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Volume 53 Number 2 2005
 

Editors, Editorial Board, Consulting Editors

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Research

Assessing Team-Based Instructional Design Problem Solutions of Hierarchical Versus Heterarchical Web-Based Hypermedia Cases
Nada Dabbagh
Katrina Denisar

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  For this study, we examined the cogency, comprehensiveness, and viability of team-based problem solutions of a Web-based hypermedia case designed to promote student understanding of the practice of instructional design. Participants were 14 students enrolled in a graduate course on advanced instructional design. The case was presented to students using two hypermedia structures, hierarchical (tree-like structure) and heterarchical (network-like structure). Results from analyses of four data sources revealed that problem solutions developed in response to the heterarchical case design were more cogent and convincing than problem solutions developed in response to the hierarchical case design. Specifically, the heterarchical case solutions provided evidence of a heuristic problem-solving process facilitating the identification of an expert-like solution to the case and the articulation of learners’ understanding and application of grounded and engaging instructional designs.  
 
 
 

Instructor Influence on Reasoned Argument in Discussion Boards

Sue Gerber
Logan Scott
Douglas H. Clements
Julie Sarama

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    In this study, we explore the extent to which two instructional techniques promote critical discourse in an online class on educational standards and curriculum: instructor stance (challenging/nonchallenging) and topic level (higher order/lower order). Posts from 25 students, across four modules, were analyzed. These four modules constituted approximately one third of the course, and were selected because the professor was the sole facilitator for them. Results indicate that, regardless of topic level, a challenging stance by the professor had a positive effect on the percentage of student posts that referenced readings and theory. There was an interaction between level and stance on student use of reasoned argument. Lower order challenging forums were associated with a greater percentage of reasoned posts. This may be due to the abstractness of the professor’s probes in higher order forums. Implications for future research include empirical investigations incorporating contextual variables and qualitative studies to ascertain how students engage with bulletin boards.  
 
 
Development    
 

Computer-Based Support for Curriculum
Designers: A Case of Developmental Research
Susan McKenney
Jan van den Akker

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In this article, we explore the potential of the computer to support curriculum materials development within the context of secondary level science and mathematics education in southern Africa. During the four-year course of the study, a computer program was developed named CASCADE-SEA, which stands for Computer Assisted Curriculum Analysis, Design and Evaluation for Science (and mathematics) Education in Africa. By carefully documenting the iterative process of analysis, prototype design, evaluation, and revision, we sought insight into the characteristics of a valid and practical computer-based tool that possesses the potential to affect the performance of its users. The results of this study include the CASCADE-SEA program itself, which assists users in producing better quality materials than they otherwise might, while they also learn from the development process. Further, this research has contributed to the articulation of design principles and related developmental research methods. This article highlights the research and development that took place, and only briefly addresses the tool itself.

 
 
 
 

Engaging By Design: How Engagement
Strategies in Popular Computer and Video
Games Can Inform Instructional Design

Michele D. Dickey

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Computer and video games are a prevalent form of entertainment in which the purpose of the design is to engage players. Game designers incorporate a number of strategies and tactics for engaging players in “gameplay.” These strategies and tactics may provide instructional designers with new methods for engaging learners. This investigation presents a review of game design strategies and the implications of appropriating these strategies for instructional design. Specifically, this study presents an overview of the trajectory of player positioning or point of view, the role of narrative, and methods of interactive design. A comparison of engagement strategies in popular games and characteristics of engaged learning is also presented to examine how strategies of game design might be integrated into the existing framework of engaged learning.

 
 
 
 

Learning from Programmed Instruction:
Examining Implications for Modern
Instructional Technology

Jason K. McDonald
Stephen C. Yanchar
Russell T. Osguthorpe

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This article reports a theoretical examination of several parallels between contemporary instructional technology (as manifest in one of its most current manifestations, online learning) and one of its direct predecessors, programmed instruction. We place particular focus on the underlying assumptions of the two movements. Our analysis suggests that four assumptions that contributed to the historical demise of programmed instruction—(a) ontological determinism, (b) materialism, (c) social efficiency, and (d) technological determinism—also underlie contemporary instructional technology theory and practice and threaten its long-term viability as an educational resource. Based on this examination, we offer several recommendations for practicing instructional technologists and make a call for innovative assumptions and theories not widely visible in the field of instructional technology.

 
 
 
 

IDEA: Identifying Design Principles in Educational Applets
Jody S. Underwood
Christopher Hoadley
Hollylynne Stohl Lee
Karen Hollebrands
Chris DiGiano
K. Ann Renninger

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The Internet is increasingly being used as a medium for educational software in the form of miniature applications (e.g., applets) to explore concepts in a domain. One such effort in mathematics education, the Educational Software Components of Tomorrow (ESCOT) project, created 42 miniature applications each consisting of a context, a set of questions, and one or more interactive applets to help students explore a mathematical concept. They were designed by experts in interface design, educational technology, and classroom teaching. However, some applications were more successful for fostering student problem-solving than others. This article describes the method used to mine a subset (25) of these applets for design principles that describe successful learner-centered design by drawing on such data as videos of students using the software and summaries of written student work. Twenty-one design principles were identified, falling into the categories of motivation, presentation, and support for problem solving. The main purpose of this article is to operationalize a method for post hoc extraction of design principles from an existing library of educational software, although readers may also find the design principles themselves to be useful.

 
 
 
Departments    

BOOK REVIEW

 

Designing Effective Instruction, by G. R. Morrison, S. M. Ross, and J. E. Kemp

Reviewed by Eugene Kowch

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INTERNATIONAL REVIEW

 
 
 

Intercultural Internet-Based Learning:
Know Your Audience and
What It Values

Joanne P. H. Bentley, Mari Vawn Tinney,
and Bing Howe Chia

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