Effects of questioning advance organizers on learning outcomes in a web-based learning object on research and academic skills
Abstract: This study explores the effect of integrating a Questioning Advance Organizer (QAO) into a web-based learning object on the basics of research and academic skills on perceived learning success, student attitudes and learning outcomes. Traditional Descriptive Advance Organizers (DAO), as originally developed by Ausubel (1960) present expository information before learning, in order for students to be able to meaningfully interpret and organize new incoming information. Questioning Advance Organizers (QAO) differ in that they present open-ended questions regarding the material to be learnt, in order to initiate deeper cognitive processing. 32 volunteer students from different disciplines were randomly assigned to one of two conditions, containing learning objects, which either presented QAOs or DAOs. The QAOs were comprised of questioning techniques intended to activate students pre-knowledge and problem solving skills. The DAOs were comprised of short descriptions of competencies that students are supposed to acquire in the following chapter. Results indicated no statistically significant differences between both groups, both in terms of perceived learning and actual learning. Students in both groups indicated a moderately high degree of satisfaction with the learning material. Given the results, this study does not provide evidence to support the use of QAOs within web based learning objects on research skills.