We examined the preference of undergraduate students for a live or a virtual rat when learning about concepts of operant conditioning. Students were provided with the opportunity to directly compare a virtual and a live rat in a supplemental exercise for Learning courses. We argue that the design of teaching exercises should involve a systematic examination of student preferences between different available techniques. In general, students preferred a live rat over a virtual rat when learning concepts in operant conditioning, specifically a fixed-ratio schedule of reinforcement. Students also listed advantages and disadvantages of using a virtual rat versus a live rat. These aspects evaluated by students are compared and contrasted with those provided by experts who have reviewed these learning exercises.
Elcoro, Mirari and Trundle, Melissa
"Student Preferences for Live Versus Virtual Rats in a Learning Course,"
International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning:
1, Article 16.
Available at: https://doi.org/10.20429/ijsotl.2013.070116