It is known that impulsives generally obtain lower learning outcomes than reflectives for problem solving tasks such as computer programming. In two experiments, a compensatory model is tested that predicts that the assumed negative effects of impulsivity may be compensated by the use of an instructional strategy that emphasizes the completion of existing programs (completion strategy), as opposed to the generation of new programs (generation strategy), because impulsives are then forced into a more reflective strategy. No support was found for this model in either a two and one-half hour computer based programming course or a 10-lesson classroom programming course. Instead, the results of the classroom study best fitted a preferential model, according to which reflectives profit most from the completion strategy and impulsives from the generation strategy.
- Cognitive style
- Instructional design