
06676042
j
Kim, Yanghee
Thayne, Jeffrey
Wei, Quan
An embodied agent helps anxious students in mathematics learning.
Educ. Technol. Res. Dev. 65, No. 1, 219235 (2017).
2017
Springer US, New York, NY; Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), Bloomington, IN
EN
C20
U50
C30
C90
embodied agents
mathematics anxiety
advanced learning technologies
interactive learning environments
pedagogical agents
doi:10.1007/s114230169476z
Summary: Mathematics anxiety is known to be detrimental to mathematics learning. This study explored if an embodied agent could be used to help alleviate student anxiety in classrooms. To examine this potential, agentguided algebra lessons were developed, in which an animated agent was equipped with prescriptive instructional guidance and anxiety treating messages. The lessons were deployed in regular mathematics classrooms, one lesson per day over a week, with 138 boys and girls in the 9th grade in the United States. After taking the weeklong agentbased lessons, students decreased in their mathematics anxiety ($p=.042$) and increased in mathematics learning ($p=.001$), regardless of the presence or absence of the agents' anxiety messages. The presence of the agents' messages only seemed to make a difference for highanxiety students. This finding suggests that an embodied agent could provide affective support for students with special needs.