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Evaluating the Instructional Architecture of Web-Based Learning Tools (WBLTs): Direct Instruction vs. Constructivism Revisited
ARTICLE

, UOIT, Canada

Journal of Interactive Learning Research Volume 24, Number 1, ISSN 1093-023X Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC

Abstract

Web-based learning tools (WBLTs), also known as learning objects, have been evaluated with a wide range of metrics, but rarely with respect to pedagogical design. The current study evaluated the impact of instructional architecture (direct instruction vs. constructive-based) WBLTs on middle (n=333) and secondary (n=389) school student attitudes (learning, design, and engagement) and learning performance (remembering, understanding, and application tasks). Students rated WBLTs with a direct instruction architecture significantly higher than WBLTs with a constructive-based architecture in the areas of learning effectiveness, design, and engagement. Students also commented that a direct instruction format had better organization and visual supports, higher quality graphics and animations, and superior help features. Students performed significantly better in the understanding and application knowledge categories when a direct instruction format was employed. No significant differences were observed between direct instruction and constructive-based architectures with respect to the remembering knowledge category. It is speculated that a direct-instruction design may be better suited younger students who are learning basic level concepts, although more research is needed to explore higher level knowledge areas.

Citation

Kay, R. (2013). Evaluating the Instructional Architecture of Web-Based Learning Tools (WBLTs): Direct Instruction vs. Constructivism Revisited. Journal of Interactive Learning Research, 24(1), 33-51. Waynesville, NC: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved October 13, 2019 from .

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