The Effects of Trained Facilitation of Learning-Oriented Feedback on Learner Engagement, Performance, Self-Efficacy, and Enjoyment
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The level of learner engagement, performance, self-efficacy, and enjoyment on a knot-tying task by college students who received positive verbal and non-verbal learning-oriented feedback by trained facilitators was examined. Secondary learner outcomes were learner perception of engagement and learner perception of facilitator support. Facilitator variables were attitude and competency.
Changes in facilitatorsâ attitudes toward (1) flow theory (Csikszentmihalyi, 1997), (2) systematic feedback (Ilgen, Fisher, & Taylor, 1979; Liden & Mitchell, 1985; Locke & Latham, 1985), and (3) hands-on learning (Joplin, 1995; Kolb, 1984; Pfieffer & Jones, 1985; Williamson, 1995) were examined. Facilitatorsâ competence in (1) delivering learning-oriented feedback, (2) using verbal learning-oriented feedback to increase learner engagement, and (3) using nonverbal learning-oriented feedback to increase learner engagement was measured.
One hundred twenty-six college students from an introductory human development class were randomly selected and randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups as facilitators, learners, or timekeepers for a knot-tying task. Twelve psychology majors, members of an independent study group in the same class, were trained as observers and randomly assigned to one of the three treatment groups. The treatment was the administration of learning-oriented feedback by trained facilitators during a knot-tying task.
The primary findings were that learning-oriented feedback provided by trained facilitators increased learner engagement, learner self-efficacy, learner task enjoyment, learner perception of facilitator support, and learner perception of personal engagement in the task. Learner performance was not affected by the administration of learning oriented feedback. Facilitators showed significant change in their attitude toward flow theory, systematic feedback, and hands-on learning.
It can be concluded that facilitators who received training in learning-oriented feedback had a greater effect on the affective side of learning (engagement, self-efficacy, enjoyment) than those who did not receive training. However, the training of facilitators in the use of learning-oriented feedback had no effect on learner performance. Further, teaching a task using facilitated verbal and nonverbal cues positively affects how facilitators feel about flow theory, hands-on learning, and feedback. Further research to verify effects of learning-oriented feedback on learner engagement using other tasks is suggested. Additional research to examine the attitudes of facilitators is suggested.
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