Recent Publications

Publication on Communities and Engagement in K-12 Virtual Learning

Hawk, N., He, J., & Xie, K. (2022). A Comprehensive Framework of Engagement in K-12 Virtual Learning: Examining Communities of Support. In Zimmerman, A. (eds.), Research, Practice, and Innovations in Teacher Education During a Virtual Age, IGI Global. DOI: 10.4018/978-1-6684-5316-2.ch014

The members of a virtual learning community, including both personal-based and school-based, are often critical to students’ overall academic success. However, the extent of these relationships differs quite widely in a virtual learning environment as compared to a traditional, face-to-face environment. While there is evidence of the importance of these relationships on academic achievement, less synthesized are how these members act together to impact student engagement, a critical function of online learning success. In this chapter, the authors describe a comprehensive framework, guided by prior research, and how students’ support system, both in school and at home, help impact four primary dimensions of student engagement, including behavioral, cognitive, social, and affective. Finally, the chapter provides some recommendations for educator preparation programs. (more…)

Publication on Teachers’ Knowledge and Beliefs in Technology Integration

Lu, G., Liu, Q., Xie, K., Long, T., Zheng, X. (online first). Quality or quantity: How do teachers’ knowledges and beliefs ‘persuade’ their technology integration in a massive government-led training programme? The Asian-Pacific Education Researcher. DOI: (SSCI Journal; Impact Factor: 2.561)

Technology integration refers to the process of innovation diffusion, from understanding technology knowledge to achieving a high level quality of technology usage. To address the gap in research regarding the critical factors that influence K-12 teachers’ practice of technology integration at the initial stage of a massive government-led training programme in rural areas, this study sought to explore the comprehensive effects of teachers’ technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK) and beliefs on their technology integration. Participants included 267 in-service K-12 teachers from four pilot schools in a remote rural area in north-western China. We found that: (a) T-related knowledge positively predicted the teachers’ technology integration quality and quantity, while T-unrelated knowledge negatively influenced technology integration quality and quantity; (b) the positive valence of teachers’ beliefs (PVTBs) was positively related to technology integration quality, the negative valence of teachers’ beliefs was negatively related to technology integration quantity; (c) the PVTBs impacted the quality and quantity of technology integration through T-related knowledge; and (d) gender significantly moderated the impact of positive beliefs and T-related knowledge on technology integration. This study suggests that improving K-12 teachers’ technology integration in rural areas requires prioritizing professional development programmes that improve teachers’ beliefs in the initial stage of technology diffusion.

Publication on Multilevel Latent State-Trait Models

Vongkulluksn, V.W. & Xie, K. (2022). Multilevel latent state-trait models with experiential sampling data: An illustrative case of examining situational engagement. Open Education Studies, 4(1), 252-272. (Open Access with Free Downloads)

Learning processes often occur at a situational level. Changes in learning context have implications on how students are motivated or are able to cognitively process information. To study such situational phenomena, Experience Sampling Method (ESM) can help assess psychological variables in the moment and in context. However, data collected via ESM is voluminous and imbalanced. Special types of statistical modeling are needed to handle this unique data structure in order to maximize its potential for scientific discovery. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how Latent State-Trait modeling used within a multilevel framework can help model complex data as derived by ESM. A study of situational engagement is presented as an illustrative case. We describe methodological considerations which facilitated the following analyses: (1) Decomposition of trait-level and state-level engagement; (2) Group differences in variance decomposition, and (3) Predicting state component of engagement. Discussions include the relative advantages and disadvantages of ESM and multilevel Latent State-Trait modeling in facilitating situational psychological research.

Keywords:Experiential Sampling; Situational Engagement; Latent Variable Modeling; Latent State-Trait Modeling

Publication on Motivation for Online Language Learning

Jiang, Z. & Xie, K. (2022). Motivating online language learners: From theory to design strategies. Journal of Technology and Chinese Language Teaching, 13(1), 1-25. (Open Access with Free Downloads)

The development of online education has posed new opportunities to language learning, especially for learning a second language such as Chinese. However, challenges also exist. One of the major concerns is motivating students to learn in an isolated and independent learning environment. Research in online education has revealed that successful online learning depends mostly on learners’ motivation and their ability to manage the learning process. However, motivation in online Chinese learning settings is an understudied area in the extant literature. This paper introduces the self-determination theory (SDT) as an appropriate theoretical framework for addressing learning and motivation challenges in online Chinese learning. This paper also explores the design of online Chinese learning environments from the perspective of SDT. It begins with a brief overview of the motivation issues in online Chinese learning and follows with the discussion of the application of the SDT theoretical framework in an online Chinese learning context. In addition, it reviews the findings in the literature of online Chinese learning and proposes instructional design strategies that can promote and support student motivation.

在线教育的发展为中文语言学习带来的新的机遇和挑战。如何激发并保持学生学习动机是在线学习中的一个重要问题之一。在线教育研究表明,学生的学习动机和管理学习过程的能力是影响在线学习的重要因素。然而,目前关于在线中文学习动机的研究尚少。 本文以自我决定学习理论为指导框架,讨论如何从学习环境设计的角度来支持中文在线学习动机的发展。本文先概述了中文在线学习中的学习动机问题,然后介绍了自我决定理论在中文学习环境中的应用,并基于目前文献研究提出相关的教学设计策略以支持学生学习动机的发展。

Publication on Seat Location and Social Interaction in Smart Classroom

Wang, J., Xie, K., Liu, Q., Long, T., & Lu, G. (2022). Examining the effect of seat location on students’ real-time social interactions in a smart classroom using experience sampling method. Journal of Computers in Education,

While prior research has examined the impact of seats on students’ performance in the classroom, no agreement has reached on how seat locations influence students’ social interactions, especially in technology-enhanced classrooms. This study seeks to understand how different seats of smart classrooms are associated with student real-time social interactions. In this study, we examine how the situational and individual factors as the key variables may account for the students’ real-time social interactions. Specifically, data on real-time social interactions and different seats were collected using the experience sampling method (ESM) from 36 sophomores at a university in central China, resulting in 180 ESM responses. The results of Multilevel Analysis showed that the students’ seat location and the week number within the individual had a significant impact on the student’s real-time social interactions, while the gender and mastery goal of students affected their social interactions among individuals. Meanwhile, the seat fluctuations of students who participated in the smart classroom presented three typical types: front row stable type, rear stable row type, and fluctuating type.

Meta-Analysis on Community of Inquiry in Online Learning

Martin, F., Wu, T., Wan, L. & Xie, K. (2022). Meta-analysis of research on community of inquiry and its impact of student learning outcomes. Online Learning,26(1), 325-359. DOI: 10.24059/olj.v26i1.2604

The Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework describes three essential presences (i.e., teaching presence, cognitive presence, and social presence) and how these presences interact in providing an educational experience in online and blended learning environments. This meta-analysis examined 19 empirical studies on the CoI Presences (Teaching Presence, Social Presence, and Cognitive Presence) and their correlations with learning outcomes, including actual learning, perceived learning, and satisfaction. It was found that teaching presence and actual learning were moderately positively correlated, (r = .353). There was a weak correlation between cognitive presence and actual learning, (r = .250) and social presence and actual learning, (r = .199). For the correlation between the presences and perceived learning, cognitive presence and perceived learning was found to be strongly correlated, (r = .663), followed by the moderate correlation between social presence and perceived learning (r = .432), and teaching presence and perceived learning, (r = .392). With respect to satisfaction, the correlation between cognitive presence and satisfaction, (r = .586) and between teaching presence and satisfaction was strong, (r = .510), but the correlation between social presence and satisfaction was moderate, (r = .447). The findings have implications for designers and instructors who design and teach online and blended courses to include these presences. (more…)

Publication on Cognitive Engagement with Technology Scale

Vongkulluksn, V.W., Lu, L., Nelson, M.J., & Xie, K. (2022). Cognitive engagement with technology scale: A validation study. Educational Technology Research & Development. (SSCI Journal; Impact Factor: 3.565)

Quantitative studies on technology integration often examined general quantity of classroom technology use or teacher-reported accounts of integration practices. There is a current need for a measurement tool that links students’ technology use and cognitive engagement, which will allow researchers to better illustrate how technology is woven into the learning process. The purpose of this study is to develop a scale to measure how students use technology for different cognitive tasks, following theoretical conceptions from Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy and Multiple-Document Task-based Relevance Assessment and Content Extraction. We employed Confirmatory Factor Analysis, as well as both classical test theory and item response theory over three studies to validate our newly created scale. The new Cognitive Engagement with Technology (CET) scale showed good psychometric properties, item functioning, and construct validity. The CET scale can be used to triangulate students’ technology use patterns with other research methods. It can also help extend past findings by taking into account how students use technology to aid in the cognitive processes of learning.

Publication on Situational Engagement in Smart Classroom

Lu, G., Xie, K., & Liu, Q. (2022). What influences student situational engagement in smart classroom: perception of learning environment and students’ motivation. British Journal of Educational Technology. (SSCI Journal; Impact Factor: 4.929)

Situational engagement plays a critical role in promoting students’ academic performance. In a smart classroom environment, this study collected longitudinal real-time data for 105 college students at a university in central China to investigate the relationship among situational engagement, personal characteristics and learning environment perceptions. Hierarchical linear modelling showed that environmental perception and students’ personal factors have different effects on situational engagement. Specifically, (1) social support perceptions, autonomous motivation and controlled motivation have a significant impact on behavioural engagement; (2) perceptions of social and media support, autonomous motivation and controlled motivation have a significant impact on shallow cognitive engagement; and (3) perceptions of teacher and social support, self-efficacy and autonomous motivation significantly predict deep cognitive and emotional engagement. This study suggests that the effect of the perception regarding advanced technology-supported learning environments on students’ situational engagement is limited, and instructors should pay more attention to improving students’ perceptions of teacher and social support, self-efficacy and autonomous motivation to promote students’ situational deep cognitive engagement in smart classrooms.

Keywords: academic motivation, experience sampling method, hierarchical
linear modelling, perceived support, situational engagement,
smart classroom

Book Chapter on Emergency Remote Teaching of Chinese Language

Wu CH., & Huang L. (2022) Instructors’ Social, Cognitive, and Teaching Presences in Emergency Remote Teaching of Chinese Language in the United States: A Qualitative Study. In: Liu S. (eds) Teaching the Chinese Language Remotely. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

Guided by Community of Inquiry (Garrison and Vaughan, Blended learning in higher education: Framework, principles, and guidelines. Jossey-Bass Publishers, 2008), this study investigated faculty’s cognitive, social, and teaching presences in teaching Chinese as a foreign language classroom during emergency remote teaching (ERT) necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic during the spring semester of 2020. The study collected data from five videoconferencing interviews with five faculty participants. The five participants, purposefully sampled, taught Chinese language classes across varying proficiency levels from five different four-year college institutions in the United States. The study analyzed the engagement strategies the participants employed in organizing their social, cognitive, and teaching presences. It further suggests pedagogical implications and future research for language instructors, teacher education programs, and university administrators to consider.

COVID-19 pandemic, Emergency remote teaching (ERT), Engagement strategies, Community of Inquiry, Technological pedagogical content knowledge, Chinese language teaching

Publication on Students’ Engagement during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Martin, F., Xie, K., & Bolliger, D. (2022). Engaging learners in the emergency transition to online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 54(S1), S1-S13. DOI: 10.1080/15391523.2021.1991703 (SSCI Journal; Impact Factor: 2.043)

Students and instructors in K-12 and higher education had to quickly transition to remote or online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. This rapid shift was challenging for students, instructors, administrators, and parents across the world. One of the biggest challenges was keeping learners engaged during remote learning due to the physical separation of instructors and students that resulted due to the pandemic. Among the fourteen articles published in this special issue on online learner engagement during COVID-19, three major themes emerged, including: (1) theories and frameworks to engage online learners, (2) characteristics of learners in various educational contexts, and (3) the selection of strategies and provisions of support in the engagement of learners during this quick transition to online or remote learning.

Keywords: Online engagement; COVID-19; online courses; online teaching; remote learning; emergency transition