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Individual Preparation and Argumentation Scripts in Social Networking Sites.



We analyse collaborative argumentative learning in Social Networking Sites. In a controlled 2×2 study (N = 128), we crossed individual preparation and argumentation scripts implemented through Facebook apps. The results show that argumentation scripts can have positive effects, while individual preparation can have negative effects on knowledge co-construction. We discuss, how early knowledge solidification may impede knowledge co-construction.
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This study investigates how group awareness support and argumentation scripts influence learning in social networking sites like Facebook, which may be conducive to informal learning, but often lacks argumentative quality. Supporting participants’ group awareness about the visibility of the arguments they construct and about prospective future debate with peers in order to promote argument quality may be particularly suited for learning in Social Networking Sites. Additional argumentation scripts may directly foster argumentative knowledge construction. In a 2 × 2 study (N = 81), we isolated and investigated the effects of group awareness support and argumentation scripts during individual preparation in a Facebook app on domain and argumentative knowledge. Our results reveal that group awareness support of upcoming argumentative processes can be counterproductive for learning in Social Networking Sites. Argumentation scripts in Facebook may remedy possible negative effects of such awareness. Process analysis showed that group awareness support promotes individual argument elaboration but reduces broad analysis of the domain.
Learning to argue is an essential objective in education; and online environments have been found to support the sharing, constructing, and representing of arguments in multiple formats for what has been termed Argumentation-Based Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (ABCSCL). The purpose of this review is to give an overview of research in the field of ABCSCL and to synthesize the findings. For this review, 108 publications (89 empirical studies and 19 conceptual papers) on ABCSCL research dating from 1995 through 2011 were studied to highlight the foci of the past 15 years. Building on Biggs’ (2003) model, the ABCSCL publications were systematically categorized with respect to student prerequisites, learning environment, processes, and outcomes. Based on the quantitative and qualitative findings, this paper concludes that ABCSCL environments should be designed in a systematic way that takes the variety of specific conditions for learning into account. It also offers suggestions for educational practice and future research.
In a teaching experiment 16 face-to-face and 11 e-mailFinnish university students studied academic debatingin an argumentation course. The 19 students of thecontrol group did not engage in the course. The courseinvolved two lectures, exercises with argumentativetexts, and face-to-face or e-mail seminar discussionsbased on these texts. Free debate, role play,problem-solving and panel discussion were the devicesused in organizing the course. The level of thestudents' argumentation skills were measured in apretest before the course and in a post-test after it.The results were compared between and within thegroups. The results indicated that during the e-mailstudies the students learned to identify and chooserelevant grounds, while the face-to-face studentsimproved in putting forward counterargumentation. Thecontrol group did not improve in these skills. Thestudy suggests that argumentation skills can bepromoted by short-term e-mail and face-to-faceteaching, and that practising argumentation indifferent learning environments develops differentkinds of argumentation skills.
Students often face process losses when learning together via text-based online environments. Computer-supported collaboration scripts can scaffold collaborative learning processes by distributing roles and activities and thus facilitate acquisition of domain-specific as well as domain-general knowledge, such as knowledge on argumentation. Possibly, individual learners would require less additional support or could equally benefit from computer-supported scripts. In this study with a 2 × 2-factorial design (N = 36) we investigate the effects of a script (with versus without) and the learning arrangement (individual versus collaborative) on how learners distribute content-based roles to accomplish the task and argumentatively elaborate the learning material within groups to acquire domain-specific and argumentative knowledge, in the context of a case-based online environment in an Educational Psychology higher education course. A large multivariate interaction effect of the two factors on learning outcomes could be found, indicating that collaborative learning outperforms individual learning regarding both of these knowledge types if it is structured by a script. In the unstructured form, however, collaborative learning is not superior to individual learning in relation to either knowledge type. We thus conclude that collaborative online learners can benefit greatly from scripts reducing process losses and specifying roles and activities within online groups.
This paper seeks to contribute new insight to the process of learning during idea generation (i.e., brainstorming) by proposing and evaluating two alternative operationalizations for learning, which we refer to as connection-based learning and multi-perspective learning, during a carefully designed idea-generation task in the earth-sciences domain. Specifically, this paper presents two controlled experiments. In the first study we manipulate two independent factors, first whether students work individually or in pairs, and second whether students work with the VIBRANT agent or not. The second study includes one additional hybrid agent condition motivated by results from the first study as well as other enhancements to the VIBRANT agent’s discussion-analysis technology. Our finding is that while brainstorming in pairs leads to short-term process losses in terms of idea-generation productivity, with a corresponding reduction in connection-based learning, it produces a gain in multi-perspective learning. Furthermore, automatically generated feedback from VIBRANT improves connection-based learning. In the second study, support from an enhanced version of VIBRANT showed evidence of mitigating the process losses that were associated with reduced learning in the pairs condition of the first study.
In collaborative learning the question has been raised as to how learners in small groups influence one another and converge or diverge with respect to knowledge. This article conceptualizes knowledge convergence and further provides measures for its assessment prior to, during, and subsequent to collaborative learning. In an exemplary study in the field of computer-supported collaborative learning with forty-eight (48) locally distant participants in 16 groups of three, we apply these measures and analyze the extent to which a computer-supported collaboration script can affect knowledge convergence. The study provides evidence for the applicability and sensitivity of the proposed knowledge convergence measures. Findings demonstrate that the instructional support increased productive divergence during collaboration and convergent individual outcomes.
Computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL) is often based on written argumentative discourse of learners, who discuss their perspectives on a problem with the goal to acquire knowledge. Lately, CSCL research focuses on the facilitation of specific processes of argumentative knowledge construction, e.g., with computer-supported collaboration scripts. In order to refine process-oriented instructional support, such as scripts, we need to measure the influence of scripts on specific processes of argumentative knowledge construction. In this article, we propose a multi-dimensional approach to analyze argumentative knowledge construction in CSCL from sampling and segmentation of the discourse corpora to the analysis of four process dimensions (participation, epistemic, argumentative, social mode).
Argumentation-Based Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (ABCSCL): A synthesis of 15 years of research
  • O Noroozi
  • A Weinberger
  • H J A Biemans
  • M Mulder
  • M Chizari
Noroozi, O., Weinberger, A., Biemans, H. J. A., Mulder, M., & Chizari, M. (2012). Argumentation-Based Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (ABCSCL): A synthesis of 15 years of research. Educational Research Review, 7(2), 79-106. doi: 10.1016/j.edurev.2011.11.006
Group Awareness Support and Argumentation Scripts for Individual Preparation of Arguments in Facebook
  • D Tsovaltzi
  • T Puhl
  • R Judele
  • A Weinberger
Tsovaltzi, D., Puhl, T., Judele, R. & Weinberger, A. (2014). Group Awareness Support and Argumentation Scripts for Individual Preparation of Arguments in Facebook. Computers & Education, 76, 108-118,