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What Works: Creating Adaptive and Intelligent Systems for Collaborative Learning Support

Nia M. Dowell, Whitney L. Cade, Yla Tausczik, James Pennebaker, Arthur C. Graesser

An emerging trend in classrooms is the use of collaborative learning environments that promote lively exchanges between learners in order to facilitate learning. This paper explored the possibility of using discourse features to predict student and group performance during collaborative learning interactions. We investigated the linguistic patterns of group chats, within an online collaborative learning exercise, on five discourse dimensions using an automated linguistic facility, Coh-Metrix. The results indicated that students who engaged in deeper cohesive integration and generated more complicated syntactic structures performed significantly better. The overall group level results indicated collaborative groups who engaged in deeper cohesive and expository style interactions performed significantly better on posttests. Although students do not directly express knowledge construction and cognitive processes, our results indicate that these states can be monitored by analyzing language and discourse. Implications are discussed regarding computer supported collaborative learning and ITS’s to facilitate productive communication in collaborative learning environments.

The final publication is available at Springer via https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-07221-0_15.