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  1. There have been numerous efforts documenting the effects of open science in existing papers; however, these efforts typically only consider the author's analyses and supplemental materials from the papers. While understanding the current rate of open science adoption is important, it is also vital that we explore the factors that may encourage such adoption. One such factor may be publishing organizations setting open science requirements for submitted articles: encouraging researchers to adopt more rigorous reporting and research practices. For example, within the education technology discipline, theACM Conference on Learning @ Scale (L@S) has been promoting open science practices since 2018 through a Call For Papers statement. The purpose of this study was to replicate previous papers within the proceedings of L@S and compare the degree of open science adoption and robust reproducibility practices to other conferences in education technology without a statement on open science. Specifically, we examined 93 papers and documented the open science practices used. We then attempted to reproduce the results with invitation from authors to bolster the chance of success. Finally, we compared the overall adoption rates to those from other conferences in education technology. Although the overall responses to the survey were low, our cursory review suggests that researchers at L@S might be more familiar with open science practices compared to the researchers who published in the International Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Education (AIED) and the International Conference on Educational Data Mining (EDM): 13 of 28 AIED and EDM responses were unfamiliar with preregistrations and 7 unfamiliar with preprints, while only 2 of 7 L@S responses were unfamiliar with preregistrations and 0 with preprints. The overall adoption of open science practices at L@S was much lower with only 1% of papers providing open data, 5% providing open materials, and no papers had a preregistration. All openly accessible work can be found in an Open Science Framework project. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 20, 2024
  2. Despite increased efforts to assess the adoption rates of open science and robustness of reproducibility in sub-disciplines of education technology, there is a lack of understanding of why some research is not reproducible. Prior work has taken the first step toward assessing reproducibility of research, but has assumed certain constraints which hinder its discovery. Thus, the purpose of this study was to replicate previous work on papers within the proceedings of the International Conference on Educational Data Mining to accurately report on which papers are reproducible and why. Specifically, we examined 208 papers, attempted to reproduce them, documented reasons for reproducibility failures, and asked authors to provide additional information needed to reproduce their study. Our results showed that out of 12 papers that were potentially reproducible, only one successfully reproduced all analyses, and another two reproduced most of the analyses. The most common failure for reproducibility was failure to mention libraries needed, followed by non-seeded randomness. All openly accessible work can be found in an Open Science Foundation project1. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  3. Many online learning platforms and MOOCs incorporate some amount of video-based content into their platform, but there are few randomized controlled experiments that evaluate the effectiveness of the different methods of video integration. Given the large amount of publicly available educational videos, an investigation into this content's impact on students could help lead to more effective and accessible video integration within learning platforms. In this work, a new feature was added into an existing online learning platform that allowed students to request skill-related videos while completing their online middle-school mathematics assignments. A total of 18,535 students participated in two large-scale randomized controlled experiments related to providing students with publicly available educational videos. The first experiment investigated the effect of providing students with the opportunity to request these videos, and the second experiment investigated the effect of using a multi-armed bandit algorithm to recommend relevant videos. Additionally, this work investigated which features of the videos were significantly predictive of students' performance and which features could be used to personalize students' learning. Ultimately, students were mostly disinterested in the skill-related videos, preferring instead to use the platforms existing problem-specific support, and there was no statistically significant findings in either experiment. Additionally, while no video features were significantly predictive of students' performance, two video features had significant qualitative interactions with students' prior knowledge, which showed that different content creators were more effective for different groups of students. These findings can be used to inform the design of future video-based features within online learning platforms and the creation of different educational videos specifically targeting higher or lower knowledge students. The data and code used in this work can be found at https://osf.io/cxkzf/. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 20, 2024
  4. Many online learning platforms and MOOCs incorporate some amount of video-based content into their platform, but there are few randomized controlled experiments that evaluate the effectiveness of the different methods of video integration. Given the large amount of publicly available educational videos, an investigation into this content’s impact on students could help lead to more effective and accessible video integration within learning platforms. In this work, a new feature was added into an existing online learning platform that allowed students to request skill-related videos while completing their online middle-school mathematics assignments. A total of 18,535 students participated in two large-scale randomized controlled experiments related to providing students with publicly available educational videos. The first experiment investigated the effect of providing students with the opportunity to request these videos, and the second experiment investigated the effect of using a multi-armed bandit algorithm to recommend relevant videos. Additionally, this work investigated which features of the videos were significantly predictive of students’ performance and which features could be used to personalize students’ learning. Ultimately, students were mostly disinterested in the skill-related videos, preferring instead to use the platforms existing problem specific support, and there was no statistically significant findings in either experiment. Additionally, while no video features were significantly predictive of students’ performance, two video features had significant qualitative interactions with students’ prior knowledge, which showed that different content creators were more effective for different groups of students. These findings can be used to inform the design of future video-based features within online learning platforms and the creation of different educational videos specifically targeting higher or lower knowledge students. The data and code used in this work can be found at https://osf.io/cxkzf/. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  5. Solving mathematical problems is cognitively complex, involving strategy formulation, solution development, and the application of learned concepts. However, gaps in students’ knowledge or weakly grasped concepts can lead to errors. Teachers play a crucial role in predicting and addressing these difficulties, which directly influence learning outcomes. However, preemptively identifying misconcep- tions leading to errors can be challenging. This study leverages historical data to assist teachers in recognizing common errors and addressing gaps in knowledge through feedback. We present a longitudinal analysis of incorrect answers from the 2015-2020 aca- demic years on two curricula, Illustrative Math and EngageNY, for grades 6, 7, and 8. We find consistent errors across 5 years despite varying student and teacher populations. Based on these Common Wrong Answers (CWAs), we designed a crowdsourcing platform for teachers to provide Common Wrong Answer Feedback (CWAF). This paper reports on an in vivo randomized study testing the ef- fectiveness of CWAFs in two scenarios: next-problem-correctness within-skill and next-problem-correctness within-assignment, re- gardless of the skill. We find that receiving CWAF leads to a signifi- cant increase in correctness for consecutive problems within-skill. However, the effect was not significant for all consecutive problems within-assignment, irrespective of the associated skill. This paper investigates the potential of scalable approaches in identifying Com- mon Wrong Answers (CWAs) and how the use of crowdsourced CWAFs can enhance student learning through remediation. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  6. Within the field of education technology, learning analytics has increased in popularity over the past decade. Researchers conduct experiments and develop software, building on each other’s work to create more intricate systems. In parallel, open science — which describes a set of practices to make research more open, transparent, and reproducible — has exploded in recent years, resulting in more open data, code, and materials for researchers to use. However, without prior knowledge of open science, many researchers do not make their datasets, code, and materials openly available, and those that are available are often difficult, if not impossible, to reproduce. The purpose of the current study was to take a close look at our field by examining previous papers within the proceedings of the International Conference on Learning Analytics and Knowledge, and document the rate of open science adoption (e.g., preregistration, open data), as well as how well available data and code could be reproduced. Specifically, we examined 133 research papers, allowing ourselves 15 minutes for each paper to identify open science practices and attempt to reproduce the results according to their provided specifications. Our results showed that less than half of the research adopted standard open science principles, with approximately 5% fully meeting some of the defined principles. Further, we were unable to reproduce any of the papers successfully in the given time period. We conclude by providing recommendations on how to improve the reproducibility of our research as a field moving forward. All openly accessible work can be found in an Open Science Foundation project1. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 13, 2024
  7. Solving mathematical problems is cognitively complex, involving strategy formulation, solution development, and the application of learned concepts. However, gaps in students' knowledge or weakly grasped concepts can lead to errors. Teachers play a crucial role in predicting and addressing these difficulties, which directly influence learning outcomes. However, preemptively identifying misconceptions leading to errors can be challenging. This study leverages historical data to assist teachers in recognizing common errors and addressing gaps in knowledge through feedback. We present a longitudinal analysis of incorrect answers from the 2015-2020 academic years on two curricula, Illustrative Math and EngageNY, for grades 6, 7, and 8. We find consistent errors across 5 years despite varying student and teacher populations. Based on these Common Wrong Answers (CWAs), we designed a crowdsourcing platform for teachers to provide Common Wrong Answer Feedback (CWAF). This paper reports on an in vivo randomized study testing the effectiveness of CWAFs in two scenarios: next-problem-correctness within-skill and next-problem-correctness within-assignment, regardless of the skill. We find that receiving CWAF leads to a significant increase in correctness for consecutive problems within-skill. However, the effect was not significant for all consecutive problems within-assignment, irrespective of the associated skill. This paper investigates the potential of scalable approaches in identifying Common Wrong Answers (CWAs) and how the use of crowdsourced CWAFs can enhance student learning through remediation. 
    more » « less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 20, 2024
  8. Within the field of education technology, learning analytics has increased in popularity over the past decade. Researchers conduct experiments and develop software, building on each other’s work to create more intricate systems. In parallel, open science — which describes a set of practices to make research more open, transparent, and reproducible — has exploded in recent years, resulting in more open data, code, and materials for researchers to use. However, without prior knowledge of open science, many researchers do not make their datasets, code, and materials openly available, and those that are available are often difficult, if not impossible, to reproduce. The purpose of the current study was to take a close look at our field by examining previous papers within the proceedings of the International Conference on Learning Analytics and Knowledge, and document the rate of open science adoption (e.g., preregistration, open data), as well as how well available data and code could be reproduced. Specifically, we examined 133 research papers, allowing ourselves 15 minutes for each paper to identify open science practices and attempt to reproduce the results according to their provided specifications. Our results showed that less than half of the research adopted standard open science principles, with approximately 5% fully meeting some of the defined principles. Further, we were unable to reproduce any of the papers successfully in the given time period. We conclude by providing recommendations on how to improve the reproducibility of our research as a field moving forward. All openly accessible work can be found in an Open Science Foundation project1. 
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  9. Studies have shown that on-demand assistance, additional instruction given on a problem per student request, improves student learning in online learning environments. Students may have opinions on whether an assistance was effective at improving student learning. As students are the driving force behind the effectiveness of assistance, there could exist a correlation between students’ perceptions of effectiveness and the computed effectiveness of the assistance. This work conducts a survey asking secondary education students on whether a given assistance is effective in solving a problem in an online learning platform. It then provides a cursory glance at the data to view whether a correlation exists between student perception and the measured effectiveness of an assistance. Over a three year period, approximately twenty-two thousand responses were collected across nearly four thousand, four hundred students. Initial analyses of the survey suggest no significance in the relationship between student perception and computed effectiveness of an assistance, regardless of if the student participated in the survey. All data and analysis conducted can be found on the Open Science Foundation website. 
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  10. Studies have shown that on-demand assistance, additional instruction given on a problem per student request, improves student learning in online learning environments. Students may have opinions on whether an assistance was effective at improving student learning. As students are the driving force behind the effectiveness of assistance, there could exist a correlation between students’ perceptions of effectiveness and the computed effectiveness of the assistance. This work conducts a survey asking secondary education students on whether a given assistance is effective in solving a problem in an online learning platform. It then provides a cursory glance at the data to view whether a correlation exists between student perception and the measured effectiveness of an assistance. Over a three year period, approximately twenty-two thousand responses were collected across nearly four thousand, four hundred students. Initial analyses of the survey suggest no significance in the relationship between student perception and computed effectiveness of an assistance, regardless of if the student participated in the survey. All data and analysis conducted can be found on the Open Science Foundation website. 
    more » « less