21.11.17 - How a collaborative learning instructional design benefitted students in complex problem solving


I present work that took place in the 4th grade of a primary school in Singapore. This work centered on how a collaborative learning instructional design, named Preparation for Future Collaboration (Lam, Low, & Li, in press; Lam & Kapur, in press), benefitted students in complex problem solving of real-world issues in environmental education. Results showed significant improvement in conceptual knowledge, student success in individual problem solving in a post transfer task, and benefits of a less generative preparation task for engaging in effective collaboration. I share how we used student conversations in pair work to infer how learning mechanisms that occurred during an individual preparatory task related to collaborative learning mechanisms. General implications inform best practices for designing preparatory activities for learning from collaboration in the classroom.


Rachel Lam earned a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with an emphasis in Learning and Cognition from Arizona State University in the U.S. Dr. Lam has conducted research in educational settings in a variety of subject areas that has focused on designing collaborative learning contexts that support all types of learners. She uses pre-posttest measures, discourse from student dialogues, and other student artifacts to assess student content knowledge and understanding, application of knowledge to real-world problems, and transfer to novel contexts. Since 2006, Dr. Lam has taught classes at the undergraduate and graduate level on a variety of topics in educational psychology, learning theories, and child development.

Source:Computer-Human Interaction Lab for Learning & Instruction