Effects of peer-tutor competences on learner cognitive load and learning performance during knowledge sharing

Amy Hsiao, Francis Brouns, Jan Van Bruggen, Peter Sloep

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

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    In Learning Networks, learners need to share knowledge with others to build knowledge. In particular, when working on complex tasks, they often need to acquire extra cognitive resources from others to process a high task load. However, without support high task load and organizing knowledge sharing themselves might easily overload learners’ limited cognitive capacities because learners first have to find relevant peer tutors (i.e., those who provide help) and then maintain the social interaction. We propose to design a peer-support system that selects tutors and provides support during knowledge sharing. The pilot study reported here investigated the effects of two peer tutor competences, tutoring skills vs. content knowledge, on tutees’ (i.e., those who need help) cognitive load and learning performance. The results show that tutees supported by tutors with tutoring skills experienced lower cognitive load and had better learning performance than did tutees supported by tutors with content knowledge. This is in line with our assumption, but for confirmation we need to gather more data in a full study. We need to first use a task that requires learners to rely on others to trigger higher cognitive skills to deal with high task load. Secondly we need to find a modus to ensure that the tutors follow the instructions to apply the particular competence.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the IADIS International Conference on Cognition and Exploratory Learning in the Digital Age (CELDA 2012)
    EditorsDemetrios G. Sampson, J. Michael Spector, Dirk Ifenthaler, Pedro Isaías
    PublisherIADIS Press
    Number of pages4
    ISBN (Electronic)978-989-8533-12-8
    Publication statusPublished - 2012
    EventIADIS International Conference on Cognition and Exploratory Learning in the Digital Age - Madrid, Spain
    Duration: 19 Oct 201221 Oct 2012


    ConferenceIADIS International Conference on Cognition and Exploratory Learning in the Digital Age
    Abbreviated titleCELDA 2012
    Internet address


    • peer-tutor competence
    • content knowledge
    • tutoring skills
    • knowledge sharing
    • cognitive load
    • tutor selection
    • Foreign countries
    • Teaching skills
    • Peer relationship
    • Social Networks
    • Computer Networks
    • Cognitive Processes
    • Difficulty Level
    • Tutors
    • Selection
    • Knowledge level
    • Sharing Behavior
    • Secondary School Students
    • Collaborative Writing
    • Pilot Projects

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