Identification of and adaptation to students' preinstructional beliefs in introductory communication research methods: Contributions of interactive web technology

Sally Jackson, Stacy Wolski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Students'preinstructional, experientially-based beliefs are known to affect their ability to learn science concepts and presumed to affect their ability to learn social science concepts in much the same fashion. From writings captured throughout several years of online instruction, three clusters of preinstructional beliefs can be identified among students in a required research methods course: beliefs about their own expertise (especially the belief that being an expert in communication means one is a skillful communicator); beliefs about scientific inquiry into communication (especially the belief that communication research only confirms commonsense); and beliefs about causality (especially the belief that personal knowledge of exceptions disproves general cause-effect relationships). These beliefs interfere with learning of methods, but can be changed through instructional formats that embed methods concepts in online argumentative dialogue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-205
Number of pages17
JournalCommunication Education
Volume50
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2001
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Argumentation
  • On-line learning protocols
  • Prior beliefs
  • Science instruction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Education
  • Language and Linguistics

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