Our products have been used in a number of classrooms ranging from dedicated Spatial Visualization courses to Introduction to Engineering and Computer Aided Design (CAD) courses at the College and High School level. We have gained some experience in implementing the tool in the classroom and provide some best practices below.
Promoting Student Persistence:
Our research has shown that student persistence is key to effective learning, and our app is designed to increase persistence. When a student gets an assignment incorrect, it is most beneficial if they try on their own first before asking for a hint. Please explain to your students that students who consistently hint and peek at the solution without a significant effort on their own will limit their learning.
To increase student persistence we have gamified the app. Students who get an assignment correct without help get 3 stars (no matter how many tries they have). If they use a hint, they get 2 stars. If they peek at the solution they get 1 star. Also, at the end of each lesson, there are 3 test assignments in which the hints are disabled.
To take advantage of these tools for increasing persistence:
Use of the app must be part of the course grade.
Grading based upon the number of stars is an easy approach, but instructors can also choose to just consider the number of assignments completed. Both values are provided in the data files sent to the teachers.
Recommended Assignment Lists:
Teachers can assign any of the ~300 assignments in the app as they would with a textbook. However, based upon the time available, we have proposed 3 options:
Full Load (~300 Assignments)
9 lessons with test assignments at the end
Mid-Load (~175 Assignments)
Odd Assignments only for all 9 lessons
Test assignments at the end of each lesson
Light-Load (~100 Assignments)
Odd Assignments for:
2D Rotations (2D)
Iso Cubes (Iso)
2D to 3D (2D 3D)
Rotations about 1 Axis (1 Axis)
Rotations about 2 Axes (2 Axes)
Test assignments at the end of each of the above lessons
Our current practice is to email a grade sheet to the instructor on a weekly basis. The grade sheet lists each students’ username along with the number of assignments and stars they have completed in each lesson. If desired we can provide a list of the stars earned for each individual assignment. The file is in a Comma-Separated-Values (CSV) format, which can be uploaded to almost all Learning Management System (LMSs).
Please contact us for any help with LMS integration.
Quantifying Improvement with Pre- and Post-Testing
The field of Spatial Visualization has greatly benefited from standardized testing. It is encouraged to implement a standard assessment at the beginning and end of the class to be able to demonstrate learning gains. This can aid in publications as well as help justify the benefits of spatial visualization training. In our research, we have primarily used the Purdue Spatial Visualization Test-Rotation (PSVT:R), which is a 20-minute multiple-choice test. Please contact us for any help with the assessment.