Volume 25, Issue 2 (summer 2023)                   Advances in Cognitive Sciences 2023, 25(2): 144-157 | Back to browse issues page


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Karami M, Karami Z. Increasing the level of cognitive complexity of learners in reading and writing through the model of teaching based on depth of knowledge. Advances in Cognitive Sciences 2023; 25 (2) :144-157
URL: http://icssjournal.ir/article-1-1525-en.html
1- MA in Educational Psychology, Instructor in Education, Hamedan, Iran
2- Assistant Professor of Farhangian University, Department of Educational Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Abstract:   (554 Views)
Introduction
One of the crucial tasks of education is to develop students' intellectual abilities. The Depth of Knowledge (DoK) model refers to the acquisition of deep knowledge and is based on the theory of constructivism, which can aid in learners' cognitive development. One topic related to cognitive development and DoK is cognitive complexity. Cognitive complexity refers to the complexity in a person's cognitive structure. Complexity or cognitive load is the type of thinking students must engage in for the topics and ideas they learn in class. Studies show that individuals at low levels of cognitive complexity think and behave differently from those at higher levels. Given this, and since cognitive complexity is an essential factor in the development of learners' intellectual skills, and it has been proven in various studies that individuals with high cognitive complexity are more successful in their work, the present study has attempted to address the issue of cognitive complexity in the curriculum. The current study investigated Norman Webb's Depth of Knowledge model to do this. This model of knowledge depth is designed to help enhance the cognitive complexity of learners. According to this model, the cognitive complexity of learners in reading and writing (Farsi lessons) can be gradually strengthened through a targeted curriculum. In this study, the researcher aims to examine the impact of the DoK model on the cognitive complexity of learners in reading and writing. Specifically, the main research question is whether the teaching model based on the DoK has an effect on the cognitive complexity level of learners in reading and writing.
Methods
This study is classified as a research with a semi-experimental design. This research used a quasi-experimental pretest-posttest control group design. The experimental group used a DoK teaching model, while the control group used the conventional teaching method. The dependent variable was the level of cognitive complexity in reading and writing among the learners. The statistical population for this research consisted of all fifth-grade boys attending elementary school in Famenin city, Hamedan, Iran, with a total of 200 students. The researchers used cluster random sampling to select a primary school for boys in Famenin City as the sample. Within that school, two fifth-grade classes were chosen: One as the control group and the other as the experimental group. The total sample size was 46 students, with 23 in each group. Data collection for this research was done using researcher-made tests designed based on the "Federal Assessment Test" cognitive complexity standards from the Florida Education Department, tailored explicitly for fifth-grade students in Farsi reading and writing. The test questions were designed to align with different levels of Webb's DoK. The questions underwent validation by experts to ensure their appropriateness and compatibility with the standards. Additionally, the reliability of the test was assessed using the parallel forms method. The research was conducted in the fifth grade of a boys' primary school in Famenin city. Prior to implementation, a reading and writing test based on the Persian lesson of the fifth grade was developed to assess the cognitive complexity levels. Descriptive statistics (mean and standard deviation) and inferential statistics (ANCOVA) were used to analyze the data collected in this research.
Results
The teaching model based on the DoK has an effect on learners' cognitive complexity level in Farsi. In order to compare the effect of two teaching methods, namely the teaching model based on the DoK and the usual teaching method, on the cognitive complexity level of the learners in reading and writing, the covariance analysis test was used. The scores of the subjects in the cognitive complexity pre-test were used as covariates in this analysis. Preliminary investigations were also conducted to ensure the assumptions of normality and homogeneity of variances, and the results indicated that the variances were normal and homogeneous. Initially, to perform covariance analysis, the dependent variable's normality and equality of variance were checked using Levene's test. Considering that the calculated value of Levene (0.13) is more significant than 0.05, the data does not question the assumption of equal variance error, suggesting no variance heterogeneity (P=0.13, Df=1 & 44, F=2.44). Therefore, covariance analysis can be employed. Table 6 presents the results of the covariance analysis. The results of covariance analysis indicated that education based on the teaching model, built on the DoK, positively affects the cognitive complexity of learners in reading and writing.
Conclusion
Superficial and unstable learning and memory cultivation have always been issues and problems within our educational system. Based on DoK, the teaching model aims to engage students in high-level learning activities. The findings of this study showed that education based on the DoK model positively impacts the cognitive complexity of learners in reading and writing. According to this model, students in the Persian classroom engage in high-level activities such as determining the primary purpose or author's point of view, analyzing and identifying similarities and differences, evaluating strong arguments against weak arguments in a text, and analyzing cause and effect relationships within the text. These activities promote high-level thinking and contribute to learners' mental growth and cognitive complexity in reading and writing. High-level education has the potential to enhance cognitive performance. In the DoK model, learners are involved in exploratory and problem-solving activities, often acquiring knowledge through their mental effort and activity. High-level education plays a crucial role in increasing cognitive complexity. Students' engagement in activities such as interpreting, predicting, inferring, classifying, analyzing, reasoning, criticizing, inventing, designing and implementing, participating, researching, synthesizing, self-monitoring, criticizing, producing, and presenting facilitates their cognitive growth and forms the foundation for the development of cognitive complexity. Individuals with high cognitive complexity possess the ability to analyze a situation into its constituent elements and identify potential relationships between them. They exhibit multidimensional thinking, enabling them to respond to complex situations effectively.
Ethical Considerations
Compliance with ethical guidelines
The present study has followed ethical principles, including obtaining informed consent, maintaining the confidentiality of participants' information, and providing sufficient information on how the research was conducted to the participants. Participants were also free to withdraw from the study.
Authors' contributions
Maysam Karami: Initial proposal, implementation of the plan, data collection and analysis, presentation of the plan report, initial drafting of the article. Zahra Karami: Review of the plan, review and analysis of the data, review of the final plan report, and final drafting of the article.
Funding
This research has not received any financial support from any organization or institution.
Acknowledgments
The authors would like to express their gratitude to the Department of Education of Famennin city and the participating students who provided the necessary groundwork for the implementation of this research.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare no conflict of interest in this study
Full-Text [PDF 963 kb]   (193 Downloads)    
Type of Study: Research |
Received: 2023/02/6 | Accepted: 2023/08/29 | Published: 2023/09/20

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