Reference : From Tool to Experience: Establishing a User Experience Perspective on Digital Conce...
Dissertations and theses : Doctoral thesis
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Theoretical & cognitive psychology
From Tool to Experience: Establishing a User Experience Perspective on Digital Concept Mapping
Rohles, Björn mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences (FHSE) > Department of Behavioural and Cognitive Sciences (DBCS) >]
University of Luxembourg, ​​Luxembourg
xviii, 258 + 36
Koenig, Vincent mailto
Fischbach, Antoine mailto
Amadieu, Franck mailto
Anohina-Naumeca, Alla mailto
Schiltz, Christine mailto
[en] User experience ; Concept Mapping
[en] Education today faces difficult challenges, particularly because the complexity of topics or problems is rising and requires that learners see connections across different domain boundaries. Consequently, learners and instructors need a systematic approach to build and assess structural knowledge, supporting them to work with complexity in the 21st century. Digital concept mapping is a promising method to address these challenges. Concept maps are graphical networks of concepts and links with a particular emphasis on explicit semantic relations. Digitalization of concept mapping offers a range of capabilities but also adds challenges of its own. As learners take on a simultaneous role of users, the question of how to purposefully design positive experiences in digital concept mapping becomes a key concern. A digital tool needs to be optimized to allow learners to focus on task-relevant aspects instead of investing cognitive resources into operating the tool. Furthermore, a digital tool can itself be a source of positive experiences, contributing to motivation and reaching the overall educational goals. With an insufficient focus on users, designers and researchers risk creating tools that do not adequately acknowledge the aforementioned impacts on education.
The present dissertation argues that the notion of user experience (UX) is adequate for investigating and purposefully shaping learner experiences with concept maps. The dissertation addresses the following research question: How does a user experience-driven approach contribute to digital concept mapping? After a general introduction (Part I), the dissertation builds on eight studies in four main parts: defining objectives of user experience design for digital concept mapping (Part II), investigating user experience design for a digital concept mapping tool (Part III), identifying scoring approaches for concept map-based assessment (Part IV), and investigating the impact of user experience on digital concept mapping (Part V). It concludes with a general discussion (Part VI).
Part II presents three studies. Chapter 2 describes a co-design study in four classes. It combined functionality-driven and experience-driven design and identified a requirements profile for a digital concept mapping tool. Chapter 3 describes a storytelling focus group study that identified the role, desired outcomes, and pain points of digital concept mapping in Luxembourgish secondary education. Chapter 4 describes an interview study that identified how digital concept mapping contributes to fulfilling psychological needs.
Part III describes the user experience design of a digital concept mapping tool. Chapters 6, 7, 8, and 9 investigate and optimize user experience with a concept mapping tool, building on a combination of critical incidents, think-aloud, card-driven investigation of psychological needs, and interviews. In summary, these studies were able to optimize user experience in digital concept mapping.
Part IV addresses the scoring of concept maps which was identified as a key challenge for instructors and researchers in Part II. Chapter 10 is a systematic literature review of criteria used to score concept maps, resulting in a comprehensive framework with three dimensions that define concept map scoring.
Finally, Part V presents two studies measuring the impact of a user experience perspective on digital concept mapping. Chapter 11 investigates user experience, psychological needs, intention to use, and concept map scores. Psychological needs strongly determined positive user experience, but not universally across all needs. User experience strongly impacted intention to use. Furthermore, our results indicated the need for further research into the relation between user experience and scores. Chapter 12 presents work in progress on guidelines and a scoring rubric for the meaningful use of multimodal features (like color, shape, or line type) in digital concept mapping.
The present dissertation contributes empirical results to establishing a user experience perspective by identifying functional and non-functional goals, contextual factors, desired outcomes, pain points, and functionalities and characteristics of digital concept mapping tools. Furthermore, it outlines how these requirements can be achieved with UX design. The dissertation also contributes theoretical and meta-analytical findings by proposing a profile of psychological needs for concept mapping and deriving a comprehensive framework of criteria used to score concept maps. Finally, the dissertation makes methodological contributions by demonstrating how humans can be systematically involved in shaping their experiences with digital concept maps. The dissertation also provides recommendations for future design and instruction.

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