An Exploration of Assessing, Affecting, and Analyzing Attitudes and Attitude Change through the Use of a Multimedia Survey Instrument
Author(s)Hergert, Thomas Robert Jr.
Contributor(s)Teaching and learning
Dodi, Norman R.
Magliaro, Susan G.
Jones, Eluned C.
Holmes, Glen A.
Burton, John K.
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Abstract<p> This study explores the use of a multimedia survey instrument which includes an integrated treatment in the context of a one semester human sexuality course. The instrument was created to assess and affect student attitudes and to improve data collection and analysis options. A literature review on attitudes, attitude assessment, and applications of technology to the affective domain introduces the discussion.<p> Developed by a team of three university researchers, the survey instrument was created as a stand-alone application using Macromedia AuthorwareÂ® multimedia authoring system. The instrument was administered to 210 students in a university education technology laboratory via CD-ROM with data collected across the campus network to two remote servers. Due to problems within specific response sets, 21 users' responses were removed from the data set, leaving an N of 189 respondents in the analyzed data. <p> The application was administered to the students twice, once early and once late in the semester. Each use included demographic data acquisition and two iterations of a 24-item survey instrument with audiovisual and reflective response treatment between them. There were also repines sections on truth of responses and evaluations of the multimedia instrument. The final interactions were opportunities for free text responses with no prompting on content. The four sets of responses to the 24-item survey comprised pretest/posttest data for six pairings of scores across time. <p> The 24-item survey was explored for the effects of both the multimedia/reflective response treatment and of the human sexuality course on student attitudes. Statistical analysis showed no significant differences in scores among the four iterations of the survey. Further exploration indicated that there were some significant changes for specific survey items. <p> This document examines the relationship among the elements of the survey and the free responses from the users for further illumination of the quantitative results. Five possible elements that may have affected the survey's outcome are considered in light of the respondents' text input. Themes that emerged from the free responses were identified and explored for possible improvements of multimedia applications for integrated information delivery and data gathering. <p> Conclusions are discussed and suggestions are made for further study regarding the template on which the application under study was built and regarding other similar multimedia instruments. These include extensions into other disciplines and other types of delivery media. Because of the exploratory nature of this study, very little can be stated conclusively. The users' reactions to and engagement with the multimedia instrument in this context do suggest broader avenues for such applications. For the moment, this medium seems to present a useful range of options to designers and researchers.