http://neurolab.uqam.ca/

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Université du Québec à Montréal|uqam|http://www.uqam.ca/

NeuroLab


Recherche


neurolab@uqam.ca



bandeau neurolab

Étude de la transférabilité des méthodologies développées en en neuroergonomie du travail  à la recherche en éducation – le cas de l’effet de la contextualisation d’exercices de physique sur l’engagement des étudiants
Principal investigator : Patrick Charland

This research project aims to assess the validity, in educational sciences, of new methodologies developed in neuroergonomy to measure the engagement of workers in various tasks. Because these tasks (driving a car, a crane handling, etc.) are different in nature from a subject who learns, it is appropriate to conduct a study that will evaluate their transferability. As specific context of this study, the vast field of research motivation seems appropriate, especially that of intrinsic motivation that is less documented due to certain difficulties encountered by researchers using traditional methodologies. One way to study the intrinsic motivation of learners is to approach it from the angle of engagement, a corollary concept. However, researchers have just developed and validated new methods capable of quantifying the degree of engagement of individuals in a task. Thus, this pilot study aims to evaluate whether contextualized physical exercises influences the degree of student engagement and if different types of contextualization engage genders differently. In a sample of 24 subjects (12 female and 12 male) neurophysiological data will be collected from five different sources (electroencephalography (EEG), facial recognition of emotion (FER), followed by eye tracking (ET), electrodermal activity (EDA) and heart rate (EKG) through a data integration software. Various statistical analyzes will explore the link between the level of engagement, types of exercise (contextualized or not) and gender of the participants. This research project constitutes the first methodological foundations of a research program that will allow researchers to quantify the dynamic of interactions between dimensions of engagement.

Development of academic self-regulation to support information literacy : A longitudinal multi-method investigation of the use of software promoting inquiry skills in grades 5 to 8 classrooms
Principal investigator : Vivek Venkatesh

Too many middle-schoolers in Canada and other industrialized countries are unable to read and write at high levels. Furthermore, it is increasingly apparent that the nature of literacy is changing since the widespread scholastic use of the Internet. The proposed program of research investigates how late elementary and early secondary students' academic self-regulatory skills develop as they engage in the use of an interactive educational software tool, ISIS-21. ISIS-21 is a tool currently available to students and educators in Québec, without charge, to promote the teaching and learning of essential information literacy competencies.

To be effective citizens in a society rich in information, students need to learn skills which will allow them to locate and select appropriate information, to analyze that information critically, and to use it wisely. Skilled readers should not only have decoding and comprehension skills in familiar contexts but also the ability to interpret and to develop new understandings in far-ranging learning contexts and situations. With the demands growing from across society for information-literate and technologically competent citizens, there is a strong need for an educational program that emphasizes the information literacy skills so crucial to the processes of critical thinking, problem solving and academic self-regulation. Little is known however, on precisely how students use the cognitive and metacognitive skills associated with academic self-regulation to complete ill-structured academic tasks that include elements of information retrieval, problem-solving, and synthesis.

Our program of research will inform the design, development, and dissemination of ISIS-21 and other evidence-based educational software in Québec classrooms. It will help address the lack of evidence surrounding the components of self-regulation that young learners employ in the inquiry process as it relates to information literacy. Most importantly, the proposed action research will help strengthen existing partnerships with stakeholders within the Lester B. Pearson School Board (LBPSB) and English Montreal School Board (EMSB) classrooms and co-develop instructional practices in Québec classrooms which incorporate cutting-edge, evidence-based software to improve students' information literacy. Our research is all the more relevant in an era of increased use of social media within the participatory Web culture. Since our research is conducted in situ to explore teaching practices within computer laboratory-based classrooms and self-regulatory processes while students learn with novel software, the results have important advantages in ecological validity: this study is not decontextualized from actual classroom learning. The action research employed will be the first of its kind to map the relationships between teaching practices, academic performance and motivation in the context of middle-school learners using digital tools to support the development of self-regulation and inquiry skills.

Dynamics of affect and cognition in learning
Principal investigator : Julien Mercier

The proposed study addresses three inter-related problems. Firstly, there is a paucity of research about the dynamic relationships between affect and cognition in learning (Immordino-Yang, 2011; Patten, 2011). Secondly, although scaffolding and feedback are reputedly the best way to foster learning (VanLehn, 2011), research and applications have mainly favored cognitive over affective components that might impact the learning process. Finally, cooperative modes of learning are not always producing anticipated learning gains, and these shortcomings could be lessened by a better understanding of inter-individual affective and cognitive processes and how they relate to learning (Stahl, 2013). In sum, attempts to self-regulate or to provide contingent help are beneficial, but nevertheless sub-optimal (Dunlosky & Rawson, 2012), because an integrated view of affect and cognition and how these processes determine learning is critically lacking at the moment (Patten, 2011).

To contribute solutions to these problems, the aim of this multi-method study is twofold: (1) to examine key affective and cognitive processes in dyads of undergraduate learners as they solve problems in physics and how they relate to the learning process and any gains in learning outcomes; and (2) to examine the impact of agency on dyads' functioning and learning. Using a computer-based serious game, Mecanika, dyads (of equivalent prior domain knowledge) will solve challenging physics problems on two topics that can be learned reasonably well in a maximum of two hours.

Engagement et conflit cognitif dans les processus de changements conceptuels en sciences
Principal investigator : Patrice Potvin

À venir

Presence, flow and learning in virtual worlds
Principal investigator : Julien Mercier

This project is about instituting a novel program of research in educational neuroscience concerned with the study and improvement of social modes of learning in virtual environments. The advantage in this approach, which involves an innovative superimposition of psychophysiological and behavioral data, is the derivation of a rich recording of affective and cognitive processes involved in learning, with an enhanced temporal grainsize, which includes information that cannot be easily verbalized or which interrupts the natural unfolding of events if obtained otherwise (for example using self-report measures). The objectives of this study are (1) to examine intra-individual and inter-individual affective and cognitive processes and their relation with learning in dyads of undergraduate learners as they learn about Greek pottery in a virtual 3D environment; (2) to examine the impact of agency (active or bystander) on dyads’ functioning and learning.

 

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