Learning as a Predictor of Situational Interest.Report as inadecuate

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A cognitive theory of interest is proposed and tested that will allow for predicting the degree to which any informational environment is perceived as interesting. This theory is the knowledge-schema theory of cognitive interest (KST) (A. Yarlas, 1998). The KST states that when learning is produced by information in an environment through either schema enhancement or schema modification, that information will be perceived as interesting. Two experiments involving 152 undergraduates and 206 undergraduates, respectively, provide evidence for the predictions of the KST regarding the direct effect of learning on interest. Across both experiments, interest varied in the expected direction as a function of both expectedness of outcomes and type of information. Interest was higher for passages containing unexpected outcomes than for those containing expected outcomes, as the KST predicted. Both experiments support the idea that degree of learning resulting from either schema enhancement or modification predicts the degree of interest for an informational environment. Two appendixes contain the target passages used in both experiments. (Contains 7 figures and 35 references.) (SLD)

Descriptors: Cognitive Processes, Educational Theories, Higher Education, Learning, Prediction, Student Interests, Undergraduate Students

Author: Yarlas, Aaron S.; Gelman, Rochel

Source: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=7687&id=ED437405

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