Title: Embodied learning via tangible user interfaces: the impact of physical interaction on learning performance

Authors: Neila Chettaoui; Ayman Atia; Med Salim Bouhlel

Addresses: National Engineering School, University of Sfax, SETIT - Research Unit, Km 4 Road Soukra, 3038 Sfax, Tunisia ' Faculty of Computer Science, October University for Modern Sciences and Arts (MSA), HCI-Lab, Faculty of Computers and Artificial Intelligence, Helwan University, Cairo, Egypt ' Higher Institute of Biotechnology, University of Sfax, SETIT - Research Unit, Km 4 Road Soukra, 3038 Sfax, Tunisia

Abstract: Tangible user interfaces have been introduced as a form of Human-Computer Interaction to promote embodied learning pedagogy. This interaction modality offers the possibility to support students' cognitive development through manipulating objects in the social and physical environment of the classroom. This article presents a study of tangible user interfaces supporting children (aged 9 to 11) while learning of the solar system concepts. A controlled study was performed at a primary school with 18 participants to evaluate the educational potential of manipulating abstract concepts in the physical world, compared to tablet-based learning. The results highlighted a significant difference in terms of the learning performance between both groups, as determined by one-way ANOVA (F (1,16) = 4.49, p = .033), in favour of the tangible user interfaces. These findings draw some implications for the adoption of the tangible interaction to extend embodied learning pedagogy and cognitive development of children.

Keywords: tangible user interfaces; human-computer interaction; physical interaction; embodied learning pedagogy; learning performance.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTEL.2022.121820

International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning, 2022 Vol.14 No.2, pp.180 - 197

Received: 22 Oct 2020
Accepted: 17 Dec 2020

Published online: 07 Apr 2022 *

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