Dyadic instruction for middle school students: Liking promotes learning

Amy C. Hartl, Dawn DeLay, Brett Laursen, Jill Denner, Linda Werner, Shannon Campe, Eloy Ortiz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


This study examines whether friendship facilitates or hinders learning in a dyadic instructional setting. Working in 80 same-sex pairs, 160 (60 girls, 100 boys) middle school students (M=12.13 years old) were taught a new computer programming language and programmed a game. Students spent 14 to 30 (M=22.7) hours in a programming class. At the beginning and the end of the project, each participant separately completed (a) computer programming knowledge assessments and (b) questionnaires rating their affinity for their partner. Results support the proposition that liking promotes learning: Greater partner affinity predicted greater subsequent increases in computer programming knowledge for both partners. One partner's initial programming knowledge also positively predicted the other partner's subsequent partner affinity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-39
Number of pages7
JournalLearning and Individual Differences
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Actor-partner interdependence model
  • Computer programming
  • Dyadic learning
  • Friendship
  • Peer influence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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