All alone with your emotions: An analysis of student emotions during effortful problem solving activities

  • Lehman B
  • D'Mello S
  • Person N
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We explored the affective states that students experienced during effortful problem solving activities. We conducted a study where 41 students solved 28 logic problems from the law school admissions test. Participants viewed videos of their interaction history and judged their emotions at different phases in the problem solving process (after new problem is displayed, in the midst of problem solving, after feedback is received). Our results indicated that curiosity, frustration, boredom, confusion, and happiness were the major emotions that students’ experienced, while experiences of contempt, anxiety, anger, sadness, fear, disgust, joy, and surprise were rare. We also explored interactions between the occurrences of the various emotions at the different phases of the problem. Implications of our results for affect-sensitive learning environments are discussed. Keywords:

Author-supplied keywords

  • affect
  • affect and learning
  • emotions
  • intelligent
  • problem solving
  • tutoring systems

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  • Blair Lehman

  • Sidney K. D'Mello

  • Natalie K. Person

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