Motivational Social Visualizations for Personalized E-Learning

  • I. -Han Hsiao
  • Peter Brusilovsky
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7563)


A large number of educational resources is now available on the Web to support both regular classroom learning and online learning. However, the abundance of available content produces at least two problems: how to help students find the most appropriate resources, and how to engage them into using these resources and benefiting from them. Personalized and social learning have been suggested as potential methods for addressing these problems. Our work presented in this paper attempts to combine the ideas of personalized and social learning. We introduce Progressor + , an innovative Web-based interface that helps students find the most relevant resources in a large collection of self-assessment questions and programming examples. We also present the results of a classroom study of the Progressor +  in an undergraduate class. The data revealed the motivational impact of the personalized social guidance provided by the system in the target context. The interface encouraged students to explore more educational resources and motivated them to do some work ahead of the course schedule. The increase in diversity of explored content resulted in improving students’ problem solving success. A deeper analysis of the social guidance mechanism revealed that it is based on the leading behavior of the strong students, who discovered the most relevant resources and created trails for weaker students to follow. The study results also demonstrate that students were more engaged with the system: they spent more time in working with self-assessment questions and annotated examples, attempted more questions, and achieved higher success rates in answering them.


social visualization open student modeling visualization personalized e-learning 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. -Han Hsiao
    • 1
  • Peter Brusilovsky
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Information SciencesUniversity of PittsburghUSA

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