The Impact of Granularity on the Effectiveness of Students' Pedagogical Decisions

Abstract

In this study we explored the impact of student versus tutor pedagogical decision-making on learning. We examined this impact at two levels of granularity: problem vs. step. 279 students were randomly assigned to four conditions and the domain content and required steps were strictly controlled to be equivalent across four conditions. The only differences among them were decision agency {Student vs. Tutor} and granularity {Problem vs. Step}. Our results showed a significant interaction effect between decision agency and granularity. That is, step level decisions can be more effective than problem level decisions but the students were more likely to make effective pedagogical decisions at problem level than step level. In general, on both problem and step levels, the students were significantly more likely to decide to do problem solving rather than study it as a worked example.


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