Students’ engagement with a collaborative wiki tool predicts enhanced written exam performance

Tom Stafford, Herman Elgueta, Harriet Cameron

Abstract

We introduced voluntary wiki-based exercises to a long-running cognitive psychology course, part of the core curriculum for an undergraduate degree in psychology. Over 2 yearly cohorts, students who used the wiki more also scored higher on the final written exam. Using regression analysis, it is possible to account for students’ tendency to score well on other psychology exams, thus statistically removing some obvious candidate third factors, such as general talent or enthusiasm for psychology, which might drive this correlation. Such an analysis shows that both high- and low-grading students who used the wiki got higher scores on the final exam, with engaged wiki users scoring an average of an extra 5 percentage points. We offer an interpretation of the mechanisms of action in terms of the psychological literature on learning and memory.

Keywords: learning technology; writing; wiki; collaborative learning; interactive learning environments; higher education

(Published: 5 August 2014)

Citation: Research in Learning Technology 2014, 22: 22797 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/rlt.v22.22797

Keywords

learning technology; writing; wiki; collaborative learning; interactive learning environments; higher education

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