What do you do online? Now think about what you do online while you are supposed to be working with your co workers or group partners? Do your fingers itch for google every 3 seconds? Do you check facebook every time you get stuck?
Now imagine trying to design around all that and get students and collaborators to work together AND keep focused.
This is what Virginie Demeure was talked about as the 4th speaker in the Group Awareness Workshop; including an analysis of students’ temporal patterns when they are learning collaboratively online.
She spoke of the differences between task dependent measures and task independent measure. Task dependent measures of work conducted online, include looking at how much work happens online in a space of time, or how many clicks are needed to accomplish a task, etc. I am most interested in task independent measures, this is when learners will report their own perspective of how much time was used to conduct different kinds of work. This self reported student data is then see the log of what they actually do. That way they can check the students self-reporting accuracy, which is something we have been very interested in during the course of the Patterns of Play project, as we show players game log data visualizations to them and ask for their self reports on the patterns.
She talked in detail about the various mechanisms within the EURO-CAT tool used for monitoring the temporal patterns students self-report and the log data the team uses to compare to what students report. These consist of bars similar to the ones we see in project management Gantt charts and the collaborators slide the bars back and forth to indicate during which hours they are usually conducting certain activities. It is an OK way to do it for a prototype, but I can’t help wishing it could be more game-like still.