Measuring Effects of Reflection on Learning – A Physiological Study

Wen Qi, Dominique Verpoorten, Wim Westera

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

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    As an economical and feasible intervention, reflection demands learners using critical thinking to examine presented information, questioning its validity, and drawing conclusions based on the resulting ideas during a learning process. The aim of this study is to gain insight into the effects of practicing short, frequent and structured reflective breaks that are interspersed with the reading process of a learning material. It tries to reveal whether physiological signals can be used as appropriate indicators to reveal the actual changes of cognitive states while introducing different reflective breaks during learning. The recorded physiological signals include skin temperature, blood volume pulse, pulse volume amplitude, and pulse rate. The results show that while these embedded “reflection rituals” did not affect learners’ performance they had significantly impact on time on task, perceived learning and those learners' physiological (cognitive) states. Physiological data returned significant differences between the reading and reflection activity. Measurements of temperature and pulse rate are lower when covering the course equipped with additional reflection affordances while blood volume pulse and pulse volume amplitude are higher. In addition, applying statistics analysis to the physiological data exhumes significant differences between different types of reflection activities for those measurements including skin temperature, pulse volume amplitude and pulse.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationproceedings of the 7th European Conference on Games-Based Learning
    EditorsPaula Escudeiro, Carlos Vaz de Carvalho
    PublisherAcademic Conferences and Publishing International Ltd.
    Pages495- 503
    Number of pages9
    ISBN (Print)978-1-909507-63-0
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    Event7th European Conference on Game Based Learning (ECGBL'13) - Instituto Superior de Engenharia, Porto, Portugal
    Duration: 3 Oct 20134 Oct 2013
    Conference number: 7


    Conference7th European Conference on Game Based Learning (ECGBL'13)
    Abbreviated titleECGBL


    • reflective break
    • reflection
    • physiological signals
    • learning


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