Not all students need the same amount of guidance

Provide students who have little prior knowledge with more guidance:

  • Include the Experiment Design Tool (EDT) to help them plan their experiments. Explain the purpose of experimentation (and the importance of varying one thing at a time if appropriate) and give an elaborate demonstration of how to operate the EDT.
  • Tell them which variable they need to vary in their experiment, and which variables they need to keep constant, instead of letting them figure this out themselves. This helps them conduct well-designed experiments from which they can better draw conclusions. You can do this by configuring the EDT with a readymade experiment yourself, so that students will start with this experiment when they go in their ILS.

Provide students who have some prior knowledge with less guidance.

  • Do not include the Experiment Design Tool (EDT) for students who have already quite prior knowledge. They will gain an equal amount of knowledge when they use the EDT compared to when they don’t use the EDT, but they can get frustrated because they already know what they need to do.
  • Do not tell them which variable they need to vary in their experiment and which variables they need to keep constant. They don’t need this additional guidance; just let them figure it out themselves!