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Abstract Title: Implicit Scaffolding: A tool design framework for supporting student agency
Abstract: Previously, we presented implicit scaffolding as a framework underlying the design of PhET simulations. We have refined this framework, and here consider its use to support student agency and ownership over learning experiences. While traditional forms of scaffolding employ explicit prompts, questions, or instructions to guide student learning, implicit scaffolding provides scaffolding through affordances, constraints, feedback, and cues designed into learning tools. Implicit scaffolding "guides without students feeling guided." With appropriately designed learning tools, the amount of explicit guidance can be reduced, leading to positive affective results. We observe students asking scientific questions, creating experiments to answer those questions, and often finding satisfaction and joy in "figuring things out". We present evidence of students productively exploring and enjoying the experience of learning with sims that incorporate implicit scaffolding.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Noah S Podolefsky
University of Colorado Boulder
390 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309
Phone: 303-641-8217
and Co-Presenter(s)
Emily B. Moore
Katherine K. Perkins