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Further results on gender and cognitive differences in help effectiveness

Summary: Further results on gender and cognitive
differences in help effectiveness
Ivon Arroyo1
, Tom Murray1,2
, Beverly P. Woolf1
, Carole R. Beal1
Universityof Massachusetts, Amherst- 2
Hampshire College, Amherst
Abstract. We explored the effectiveness of help for 350 students of different genders and
cognitive developments, in an arithmetic intelligent tutoring system. We conclude that girls
were more sensitive to the amounts of help fitting their needs than to the level of abstraction.
On the other hand, boys were affected by the abstraction level, and ignored help more.
Past research suggests that what constitutes good teaching will not be the same for students
of different genders [Carr, 97; Royer, 99] and cognitive developments [Suydam&Higgins,77;
Fuson&Briars,90]. Cognitive development research suggests that concrete-operational
students benefit from concrete teaching materials more than numeric-procedures to learn
arithmetic. Meanwhile, the two genders seem to choose different approaches to problem
solving, girls using more concrete and overt strategies, boys using covert approaches and


Source: Arroyo, Ivon M. - Center for Knowledge Communication, University of Massachusetts at Amherst


Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences