Comparison of Written and Spoken Instruction to Foster Coordination between Diagram and Equation in Undergraduate Physics Education

  • Visual–graphical representations are used to visualise information and are therefore key components of learning materials. An important type of convention-based representation in everyday contexts as well as in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines are vector field plots. Based on the cognitive theory of multimedia learning, we aim to optimize an instruction with symbolical-mathematical and visual-graphical representations in undergraduate physics education through spoken instruction combined with dynamic visual cues. For this purpose, we conduct a pre-post study with 38 natural science students who are divided into two groups and instructed via different modalities and with visual cues on the graphical interpretation of vector field plots. Afterward, the students rate their cognitive load. During the computer-based experiment, we record the participants’ eye movements. Our results indicate that students with spoken instruction perform better than students with written instruction. This suggests that the modality effect is also applicable to mathematical-symbolical and convention-based visual-graphical representations. The differences in visual strategies imply that spoken instruction might lead to increased effort in organising and integrating information. The finding of the modality effect with higher performance during spoken instruction could be explained by deeper cognitive processing of the material.

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Author:Verena RufORCiD, Stefan KüchemannORCiD, Jochen KuhnORCiD, Pascal KleinORCiD
Parent Title (English):Human Behavior and Emerging Technologies
Document Type:Article
Language of publication:English
Publication Date:2022/03/16
Year of Publication:2022
Publishing Institute:Technische Universität Kaiserslautern
Date of the Publication (Server):2022/12/09
Number of page:13
Faculties / Organisational entities:Kaiserslautern - Fachbereich Physik
DDC-Cassification:1 Philosophie und Psychologie / 150 Psychologie
5 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik / 530 Physik
Licence (German):Zweitveröffentlichung