Innovations in Collaborative Environments and Learning Technologies

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    Virtual Reality Applications for Higher Educations: A Market Analysis
    ( 2021-01-05) Radianti, Jaziar ; Majchrzak, Tim A. ; Fromm, Jennifer ; Stieglitz, Stefan ; Vom Brocke, Jan
    Benefits and applications of virtual reality (VR) in higher education have seen much interest both from research and industry. While several immersive VR applications for higher education have been described, a structured analysis of such applications on the market does not exist. We use design elements from research for applying VR in higher education to analyze available VR apps. The analyzed VR applications were acquired from pertinent online stores to capture the market’s state. We analyze the current picture of the available apps by categorizing them based on design elements and learning content. The aims are to map what types of apps are available, to study what expected types cannot (yet) be found, to compare the current state of the literature and the educational VR app market, as well as to scrutinize the most frequently used design elements for VR in education.
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    Using Eye-Tracking Data to Compare Differences in Code Comprehension and Code Perceptions between Expert and Novice Programmers
    ( 2021-01-05) Jessup, Sarah ; Willis, Sasha M. ; Alarcon, Gene ; Lee, Michael
    Previous research has examined how eye-tracking metrics can serve as a proxy for directly measuring the amount of cognitive effort and processing required for comprehending computer code. We conducted a pilot study comprising expert (n = 10) and novice (n = 10) computer programmers to examine group differences in code comprehension abilities and perceptions. Programmers were asked to read two pieces of computer code, rate the code on various attributes, and then describe what the code does. Results indicate that experts and novices significantly differ in terms of their fixation counts made during the task, such that experts had more fixations than novices. This was counter to our hypothesis that experts would have fewer fixations than novices. We found no evidence that experts and novices differed in their average fixation durations, trustworthiness and performance perceptions, or willingness to reuse the code.
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    The Virtual Tutor: Tasks for conversational agents in Online Collaborative Learning Environments
    ( 2021-01-05) Gabriel, Christian ; Hahne, Charlotte ; Zimmermann, Alina ; Lenk, Florian
    Online collaborative learning environments are becoming increasingly popular in higher education. E-tutors need to supervise, guide students and look out for conflicts within the online environment to ensure a successful learning experience. Web-based platforms allow for interactive elements such as conversational agents to disencumber the e-tutor. Repeatable tasks, which do not require a human response, can be automatized by these systems. The aim of this study is to identify and synthesize the tasks an e-tutor has and to investigate the automatisation potential with conversational agents. Using a design science research approach a literature review is conducted, identifying 13 tasks. Subsequently, a matrix is established, contrasting the tasks with requirements for the use of conversational agents. Furthermore, a virtual tutor framework is developed, clarifying the agent type selection, the technical structure and components for a prototype development in an online collaborative learning environment.
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    The Role of Spatial Ability in Learning with Virtual Reality: A Literature Review
    ( 2021-01-05) Lin, Yongqian ; Suh, Ayoung
    No research has systematically reviewed the role of spatial ability in virtual reality (VR) learning. This has resulted in inefficiencies in educators’ ability to adopt personalized teaching strategies based on learners’ spatial ability to maximize the effectiveness of VR. Therefore, this study conducted a literature review on spatial ability in VR learning to provide researchers and educators with a comprehensive understanding of how spatial ability affects VR learning. After searching Scopus with keywords and applying inclusion and exclusion criteria, the researchers identified 30 relevant research articles for the review. This literature review mainly analyzed research trends, contexts, theories, methodologies, and findings from the identified articles. The contradictory role of spatial ability in VR learning was also summarized. Based on the literature analysis, this study identified research gaps and indicated directions for future research.
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    The omitted variable: could DuoTest enable a new way to assess the link between individual and team performance in team-based learning?
    ( 2021-01-05) Bonazzi, Riccardo ; Rouiller, Yviane
    Imagine a class of students being allowed to do their final exam twice in a row: the first time, participants do their exam individually and with closed books (Exa01); the second time, they solve the same exam in groups and with open books (Exa02). If you think that all students will get a better grade in the second exam, you would be surprised by the results. This article is part of an ongoing project to develop a method for team-based learning named Testudo. We present an assessment technique called DuoTest, which uses a mixed model to (a) analyze data from individual and group exams and (b) determine the positive (or negative) effect of each team over the individual performances. Empirical results collected from 70 students show that individual exams are a weak predictor of the group scores, whereas fixed effects associated to each team are a better predictor of Exa02.