Developing 'text learning capture' to examine how students learn from texts and how texts learn from students

Sheri Sheppard, Kim Jones, Natalie Jeremijenko

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This paper describes an innovative assessment method that provides formative feedback on the effectiveness of an engineering textbook. We describe the development of the Text Learning Capture Method and the prior art that it is drawn from. We then go on to interpret and analyze the protocols captured with the method and describe the preliminary results generated with its application. Concrete examples of how the feedback enables us to identify the text's readability, comprehensibility, and usability are given. From the analysis a list of questions was generated about how students learn from engineering textbooks. The textbook assessment work presented here was motivated by a desire on the part of the author of the textbook (hereafter the text-author in contrast to the authors of this paper) to understand more fully the role of this textbook in supporting student learning. We began with questions such as: "Do students relate to the real-world examples given?"; "How do students work through the equations?"; "How are figures utilized?"; "Are students excited by a textbook that uses a familiar multi-faceted artifact to demonstrate engineering principles?". In our attempts to carefully answer these questions we generated questions such as: "Can learning from a text book be thought of as passive?"; "What constitutes effective learning from texts?"; "What are best reading practices?"; and "How much control does an author have over this?".

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication10th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
ISBN (Electronic)9780791880333
StatePublished - 1998
EventASME 1998 Design Engineering Technical Conferences, DETC 1998 - Atlanta, United States
Duration: Sep 13 1998Sep 16 1998

Publication series

NameProceedings of the ASME Design Engineering Technical Conference


ConferenceASME 1998 Design Engineering Technical Conferences, DETC 1998
Country/TerritoryUnited States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Modeling and Simulation


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