Learning from error episodes in dialogue-videos: The influence of prior knowledge

Lu Ding, Katelyn M. Cooper, Michelle D. Stephens, Michelene T.H. Chi, Sara E. Brownell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


In laboratory study environments, dialogue-videos, or videos of a tutor and a tutee solving problems together, have been shown to more effectively improve student learning than monologue-videos, or videos of tutors solving problems alone. Yet, few studies have replicated these findings in the context of authentic university classrooms. Here, we investigate the impact of dialogue-videos, and more specifically the effect of errors made by tutees in dialogue-videos, on student learning in the context of an undergraduate biology course. To understand why, we investigated students’ effort spent on watching videos, perceived influence of dialogue-videos, and worksheet completion rates. We found that higher-performing students perceived that they used the dialogue-videos to review content. We also found that higher-performing, but not lower-performing, students learned better from dialogue videos where tutees made errors. We also discuss the complexities of replicating laboratory studies in the classroom and implications of our findings. Implications for practice or policy: • Tutee errors can be intentionally included in dialogue-videos to promote student learning. • When students lack the necessary prior knowledge, monologue-videos may be more effective in presenting the course content. • When using dialogue-videos, instructors can encourage students to collaborate to resolve any confusion in time to maximise the benefit of dialogue-videos in teaching and learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20-32
Number of pages13
JournalAustralasian Journal of Educational Technology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2021


  • dialogue-videos
  • errors
  • mixed methods research
  • monologue-videos
  • prior knowledge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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