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How Software Technologies Can Improve Research on Learning and Bolster School Reform

Educational Psychologist Volume 41, Number 1, ISSN 0046-1520


Realizing the promise of software technologies in education requires thinking differently about how software simultaneously can serve research and contribute to learning. This article examines 3 axioms underlying contemporary educational psychology: Learners construct knowledge, learners are agents, and data include lots of randomness. By drawing out corollaries of these axioms, this research uncovers significant challenges researchers face in using classical forms of experimental research to build a basis for school reform and for testing school reforms using randomized field trials. This article describes a software system, gStudy, that is designed to address these challenges by gathering finer grained data that better support theorizing about the processes of learning and self-regulated learning. This research illustrates how this can be realized and suggests 10 ways that using software like gStudy can help pull up research by its bootstraps and bolster searches for what works.


Winne, P.H. (2006). How Software Technologies Can Improve Research on Learning and Bolster School Reform. Educational Psychologist, 41(1), 5-17. Retrieved October 7, 2022 from .

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