This presentation will involve the audience in a discussion of student engagement in the digital age and will highlight the role of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation for the current generation of students. The need for self-expression in the learning process is addressed and the results of a controlled experiment that adds self-expression dimension to course tasks are presented. The enabling technological platform on which the controlled experiment was run will be briefly described.
When can technology positively impact engagement with a learning task? Some researchers find technology beneficial for the process of learning, and in particular student engagement, while others argue that it has a negative effect on learning as it distracts attention from more important issues. We run an experimental study at a liberal arts college to assess student engagement with regular university courses when introducing digital challenges with a clear self-expression nature. We find distinct levels of engagement as well as course performance between the test and the control group. In this context we discuss the role of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and their interaction with digital technology for altering the degree of engagement with an academic course.
- The role of technology for undergraduate learning
- The role of student engagement and factors that influence it: the student engagement instrument
- The potential role of technology for student engagement
- The role of self-expression in the context of the academic and social life in a liberal arts college
- The design of the controlled experiment: methodology and data
- Results and discussion
In this study we analyze the impact of technologically-enabled challenges for student engagement with a course. We find an increase in the student intrinsic motivation as opposed to extrinsic motivation as a result of technological challenges that emphasize self-expression in the academic context.