Towards a Collaborative Space for Learning Digital Systems

David Baneres
Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, Spain


Practical skills such as Programming Languages or Digital Systems Design are learned by experience. Such skills are not mechanical processes, but rather a creative one. For this reason, students should practice repeatedly and receive constant feedback in order to further progress in their learning process. Nevertheless, it is difficult for instructors to give constant and individual feedback in this type of exercise, as there are many different correct strategies to construct a valid solution. Intelligent tutoring systems can be used in order to automate individual feedback, however the lack of intervention of the instructor or other students in the process of solving the design hinders the learning process. This study aims to examine the effect of the combination of a automated tutoring system for learning circuits design with an asynchronous collaborative space organized in different groups. Findings indicate that the student retention, the students’ performance and collaborative knowledge construction is enhanced with this combination.

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