An experimental assessment of the use of cognitive and affective factors in adaptive educational hypermedia
Samaras, George S.
SourceIEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies
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In order to assess the positive effect and validity of personalization on the basis of users' cognitive and emotional characteristics, this study presents three subsequent experiments. The first experiment explores the relationship of cognitive style and users' eye gaze behavior as to validate this specific psychological construct in the context of educational hypermedia. The second and third experiments present the effect of a set of human factors (cognitive style, visual working memory span, control/speed of processing, and anxiety) in an adaptive educational system. The eye tracking experiment demonstrated that eye gaze patterns are robustly related to cognitive style (n = 21), while matching the instructional style to users' characteristics was revealed to be statistically significant in optimizing users' performance (n = 219), with the exception of control/speed of processing. Based on this empirical assessment, this paper argues that individual differences at this intrinsic level are important and adaptation on these parameters through personalization technologies may have a positive effect on learning performance. © 2009 IEEE.