Effect of Worked Examples on Mental Model Progression in a Computer-Based Simulation Learning Environment
Journal of Computing in Higher Education Volume 22, Number 2, ISSN 1042-1726
In a diagnostic problem solving operation of a computer-simulated chemical plant, chemical engineering students were randomly assigned to two groups: one studying product-oriented worked examples, the other practicing conventional problem solving. Effects of these instructional strategies on the progression of learners' mental models were examined by comparing representations of their mental models with those of experts at three segments of the instruction. Progression of mental models for the worked example group was significantly greater than those using the problem-solving strategy. However, this progression did not manifest itself in learners' troubleshooting performance measured by number of correct diagnosis and first time correct diagnosis. The implications of these results for designing instruction tailored to learners' domain knowledge are discussed. (Contains 4 figures, 2 tables, and 1 footnote.)
Darabi, A., Nelson, D.W., Meeker, R., Liang, X. & Boulware, W. (2010). Effect of Worked Examples on Mental Model Progression in a Computer-Based Simulation Learning Environment. Journal of Computing in Higher Education, 22(2), 135-147.