Contributing USMA Research Unit(s)

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date

Fall 10-2017


Maximizing a student's learning in a general education information technology course is critical when teachers have only a little time to cover numerous topics within the discipline. It is therefore paramount that programs utilize the most effective pedagogical approach to educating students on these topics. This allows teachers to take full advantage of this limited time per topic. The principal contribution of this paper is a statistical analysis of student performance in an intermediate-level information technology course when exposed to two popular methods of teaching information technology concepts. This course is part of the larger cyber education model at the United States Military Academy. Our study implemented and analyzed the results from a control group educated with systematic, skills-based instruction versus a treatment group where a problem-centered learning approach was utilized. Our experimental results provide statistically significant reinforcement of the idea that problem-centered learning is superior to skills-based instruction for educating students in information technology topics as a part of their cyber education.

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