Dyadic executive function effects in children's collaborative hypermedia learning
Publication date: April 2019Source: Learning and Instruction, Volume 60Author(s): Cindy Paans, Eliane Segers, Inge Molenaar, Ludo VerhoevenAbstractThe current study investigated the extent to which executive functions (EF) affect how prior knowledge predicts hypermedia learning outcomes in primary school children. Learning outcomes were: individual knowledge and transfer, and dyadic assignment quality. Eighty-seven same-sex dyads participated in a hypermedia WebQuest assignment about the heart and living a healthy lifestyle. EF measures were action control and attention control. Dyadic analyses were performed using actor-partner interdependence models with dyads distinguished by EF. Analyses showed that one's own pre-test predicted one's own and partner's post-test for both higher and lower EF dyad members. Furthermore, for dyad members with relative higher EF only, their own and partner's pre-test predicted transfer. Finally, the lower action control dyad member's pre-test and the higher attention control dyad member's pre-test predicted assignment quality. These results show the importance of EF and prior knowledge for deeper conceptual understanding in a collaborative learning setting.