Computers in Human Behavior vol:22 issue:3 pages:389-411
Computer-based learning environments often confront learners with a number of tools, i.e. non-embedded support devices. Such environments assume learners to be good judges of their own learning needs. However, research indicates that students do not always make adequate choices for their learning process. This especially becomes an issue with the use of open learning environments, which are assumed to foster the acquisition of complex problem solving skills. Such open learning environments offer students tools to support their learning. Consequently, it is needed to understand factors that influence tool use acquire insight in learning effects of tool use. Both issues are addressed in this contribution. A review of the existing literature has been undertaken by performing it search on the Web of Science and the PsycInfo database. Results indicate that there is some evidence for learner, tool and task characteristics to influence tool use. No clear indication was found for a learning effect of tool use. The conclusion proposes a research framework for the systematic study of tools. (c) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.