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|Title:||Interactive Representations of Student Activity to Inform Teacher Collaborations: Results from a Formative Exploration|
|Authors:||Shapiro, R. Benjamin|
|Publisher:||International Society of the Learning Sciences|
|Citation:||Shapiro, R. B. & Wardrip, P. (2011). Interactive Representations of Student Activity to Inform Teacher Collaborations: Results from a Formative Exploration. In Spada, H., Stahl, G., Miyake, N., & Law, N. (Eds.), Connecting Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning to Policy and Practice: CSCL2011 Conference Proceedings. Volume I — Long Papers (pp. 494-501). Hong Kong, China: International Society of the Learning Sciences.|
|Abstract:||We describe a student activity visualization tool that we constructed to provide a context for ethnomethodological inquiry -- a design-based breach experiment (Crabtree et al, 2004) -- into how teachers might think and communicate about student thinking when they have tools that give them better access to student activity. We use the Learning to Notice framework (van Es & Sherin, 2008) to characterize the kinds of activity that occurred when teachers used the tools in a team meeting. Then, we show how theses uses suggest ways that research on and uses of student activity representations may need to be sensitive to how contexts of implementation shape the consumption and use of those representations. Objective Researchers in CSCL, educational data mining, games for learning, CSCW, and HCI more broadly are working to develop manual and automatic techniques for characterizing and classifying patterns, including patterns over time, in users' collaborative and individual interactions with computer-based media (Reimann, 2009). Suthers and colleagues are developing a methodology, and supporting tools, for analyzing logs of online activity in order to discover patterns in uses of on-screen representations that span multiple participants (Suthers et al., 2010; Medina & Suthers, 2008). Shute et al. (2009) describes how the play of educational games may be scrutinized to create psychometrically valid assessments of learning and understanding that may be embedded in-game. Bit by bit, CSCL and its cognate fields are developing the methodological tools to produce precisely the kind of accounts of student activity that could support breakthroughs in the responsiveness of instructional environments (Fullan et al., 2006). But very few efforts have been made to actually construct systems that would assist teachers in understanding their students' activity and learning in CSCL environments. Rare exceptions include Feng and Heffernan (2006)'s ASSISTment project, which explores how students' interactions with an intelligent tutoring system may be summarized in order to help teachers to know what students know and Summary Street, which provides teachers and students with feedback about the quality of students' text comprehension and summary writing (Wade-Stein & Kintsch, 2004). Because of this, very little progress has been made toward figuring out how practitioners (teachers or students) will use computer-generated accounts of student activity (and what the challenges to doing so will be) once the difficult methodological challenges of constructing them have been sufficiently overcome. We do not believe that research into the application of representations of student activity and learning to improving teaching must wait until methods for generating valid and reliable accounts of activity and learning are established. Instead, we propose that CSCL should deepen its inquiry into how representations of students' activity may be used in schools even as it figures out how to create those representations. Indeed, research on how such accounts could be used, including the diverse ways in which different teachers might interpret different representations or in which different backgrounds or classroom contexts might shape their interpretation may be quite valuable in shaping the learning analytic program by helping researchers within it to focus their efforts on techniques that might have the largest impact on practice. This paper describes the beginnings of an attempt to do just that. We describe a student activity visualization that we constructed to provide a context for ethnomethodological inquiry -- a design-based breach experiment (Crabtree et al, 2004) -- into how teachers might think and communicate about student thinking when they have tools that give them better access to student activity. We describe our results in two parts: first, we use the Learning to Notice framework (van Es & Sherin, 2008) to establish whether our tool provides enough stimulus to the existing context of work to make activity occur that is consistent with a leading theory of teacher learning. Then, we show how the uses of our tool in teachers' collaborative practice suggest ways that research on student activity analysis representation construction and uses of new representations in practice may need to be sensitive to how contexts of implementation shape the consumption and use of those representations. Theoretical Framework Teaching is a socially complex dynamic of data-rich interactions between teachers, students, and content, mediated by classroom materials. What teachers choose to focus on with respect to their instruction, their classroom environment, and student understanding has a powerful influence on what they understand about their classrooms (Sherin & van Es, 2003). Teacher noticing is simultaneously a process of directing attention to certain features of instruction as well as a sense-making activity that connects what one notices to larger principles of action. Collaborative practices that improve teachers' capacity to notice student thinking in classroom activity can also develop common professional vision (Goodwin, 1992) amongst teams of teachers (an important ingredient in improving instruction in schools) as well as make teaching practices more public|
|Appears in Collections:||CSCL 2011|
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