Do optional activities matter in virtual learning environments?

José A. Ruipérez-Valiente, Pedro J. Muñoz-Merino, Carlos Delgado Kloos, Katja Niemann, Maren Scheffel

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Article in proceedingAcademicpeer-review

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    Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) provide students with activi-ties to improve their learning (e.g., reading texts, watching videos or solving exercises). But VLEs usually also provide optional activities (e.g., changing an avatar profile or setting goals). Some of these have a connection with the learn-ing process, but are not directly devoted to learning concepts (e.g., setting goals). Few works have dealt with the use of optional activities and the relation-ships between these activities and other metrics in VLEs. This paper analyzes the use of optional activities at different levels in a specific case study with 291 students from three courses (physics, chemistry and mathematics) using the Khan Academy platform. The level of use of the different types of optional ac-tivities is analyzed and compared to that of learning activities. In addition, the relationship between the usage of optional activities and different student be-haviors and learning metrics is presented.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationOpen Learning and Teaching in Educational Communities
    Subtitle of host publication9th European Conference on Technology Enhanced Learning, EC-TEL 2014, Graz, Austria, September 16-19, 2014, Proceedings
    EditorsC. Rensing, S. de Freitas, T. Ley, P.J. Munoz-Merino
    Place of PublicationCham
    Number of pages14
    ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-11200-8
    ISBN (Print)978-3-319-11199-5
    Publication statusPublished - Sept 2014
    Event9th European Conference on Technology Enhanced Learning (EC-TEL) - Graz, Austria
    Duration: 16 Sept 201419 Sept 2014

    Publication series

    SeriesLecture Notes in Computer Science


    Conference9th European Conference on Technology Enhanced Learning (EC-TEL)


    • optional activities
    • Khan Academy
    • learning analytics
    • MOOCs


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