ERIC Number: EJ726268
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jan
Eighth-Grade Students Defining Complex Problems: The Effectiveness of Scaffolding in a Multimedia Program
Zydney, Janet Mannheimer
Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, v14 n1 p61-90 Jan 2005
This pilot study investigated the effectiveness of a multimedia learning environment called "Pollution Solution" on eighth-grade students' ability to define a complex problem. Sixty students from four earth science classes taught by the same teacher in a New York City public school were included in the sample for this study. The classes were randomly assigned to one of four comparison groups who each received different treatments of the software. The different treatments included varying types of scaffolding to help the students define the problem. The preliminary findings indicated that the organization scaffold was most effective in helping students to understand the problem, develop hypotheses, and ask more specific questions inside the problem domain. The higher-order thinking scaffold was most effective at helping students grasp the multiple perspectives of the problem. However, the combined scaffolding did not do as well as these scaffolds did individually. Further research needs to be done to determine if this was due to lack of time or some other issue.
Descriptors: Instructional Effectiveness, Earth Science, Teaching Methods, Multimedia Instruction, Computer Assisted Instruction, Computer Software, Grade 8, Scaffolding (Teaching Technique), Thinking Skills
Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education, P.O. Box 1545, Chesapeake, VA 23327-1545. Tel: 757-366-5606.
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Grade 8
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York