Confidence drives exploration strategies in interactive simulations

Amaël Arguel, Jason M. Lodge, Mariya Pachman, Paula G. De Barba

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)
    47 Downloads (Pure)


    Maximising the benefits of digital learning environments requires understanding how students process what they are exposed to in these environments. Besides approaches based on examining information processing within the cognitive domain, the importance of including emotions has been recently addressed. This study aimed to explore emotional dynamics during discovery learning in an interactive simulation, with continuous measures of self-reported confidence and challenge. Interactions from participants were recorded and two groups were created according to the exploration strategy used: systematic or non-systematic. Visual exploration was also measured by eye tracking as well as knowledge at pre- and post-test. Results suggest that learners using a systematic exploration strategy ran significantly more simulation cycles than non-systematic learners. Moreover, the latter group reported to be significantly less challenged and more confident about understanding the material. These results emphasise the importance of student perceptions of their capabilities when learning in flexible, less structured digital environments.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationShow me the learning. Proceedings ASCILITE 2016 Adelaide
    EditorsS. Barker, S. Dawson, A. Pardo, C. Colvin
    Place of PublicationAdelaide, Australia
    PublisherUniversity of South Australia
    Number of pages10
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    EventInternational Conference of Innovation, Practice and Research in the Use of Educational Technologies in Tertiary Education (33rd : 2016): Show me the learning - Adelaide, Australia
    Duration: 27 Nov 201630 Nov 2016
    Conference number: 33rd


    ConferenceInternational Conference of Innovation, Practice and Research in the Use of Educational Technologies in Tertiary Education (33rd : 2016)
    Abbreviated titleASCILITE Adelaide 2016

    Bibliographical note

    Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


    • discovery learning
    • confidence
    • interactive interface
    • digital learning environments


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