e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

Home / Regular Issue / JTAS Vol. 29 (S1) 2021 / JSSH(S)-1503-2021


Exploring Pre-University Students’ Construction of Reasoned Argumentation during Computer - Supported Collaborative Discussions Using Sequential Analysis

Pavithra Panir Selvam and Aini Marina Ma’rof

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 29, Issue S1, December 2021


Keywords: Collaborative reasoning, computer-supported collaborative learning, reasoned argumentation skills, sequential analysis

Published on: 14 April 2021

The prominent role of reasoning skills in predicting academic outcomes is clearly evident over the years in that its inculcation in various face-to-face learning contexts has become progressively dominant, including in the collaborative learning (CL) settings. The pandemic crisis, however, challenged traditional learning approaches to shift to an online mode overnight resulting in dramatic changes of learning delivery whereby teaching is undertaken remotely and on digital platforms. Though impact of CL-based approaches in promoting reasoning skills have been well-documented over the years, a systematic analysis of learners’ behavioural patterns of argumentation and reasoning in a virtual collaborative learning environment is yet to be concretely established. The current study therefore sought to investigate the development of reasoned argumentation skills among pre- university students with mixed language abilities, using open-ending short stories via a computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL) environment. Adopting the case study research design by applying a mixed-methods approach through both descriptive and sequential analyses, 12 pre-university students from a public research university served as participants of this study. The results show that language ability has a strong predictive factor on reasoned argumentation skills and there is an established tendency of the participants to produce constructive arguments over defensive or challenging viewpoints to alternative ideas. This calls for future studies to further investigate predictive factors of this tendency and to further ascertain the predictive role of language-rich discussions in facilitating various higher order thinking skills among learners.

  • Aikins, J. W., Bierman, K. L., & Parker, J. G. (2005). Navigating the transition to junior high school: The influence of pre-transition friendship and self-system characteristics. Social Development, 14(1), 42–60. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9507.2005.00290.

  • Andriessen, J. (2006). Arguing to learn. In K. Sawyer (Ed.), Handbook of the learning sciences (pp. 443–459). Cambridge University Press.

  • Anisah, I. M., & Delina, M. (2019). Augmented reality water rocket: Develop an enrichment book of physics. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 1185(1), 012044. doi: 10.1088/1742-6596/1185/1/012044

  • Asterhan, C. S. C. & Schwarz, B. B. (2007). The effects of dialogical and monological argumentation on concept learning in evolutionary theory. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99(3), 626-639. doi: 10.1037/0022-0663.99.3.62

  • Bakeman, R., & Gottman, J. M. (1997). Observing interaction: An introduction to sequential analysis. (2nd Ed.). Cambridge University Press

  • Banerjee, M., Capozzoli, M., McSweeney, L. & Sinha, D. (1999). Beyond kappa: A review of interrater agreement measures. Canadian Journal of Statistics, 27, 3-23. doi: 10.2307/331548

  • Bellmore, A. (2011). Peer rejection and unpopularity: Associations with GPAs across the transition to middle school. Journal of Educational Psychology, 103(2), 282–295. doi: 10.1037/a002331

  • Berland, L. K. (2011). Explaining variation in how classroom communities adapt the practice of scientific argumentation. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 20(4), 625–664. doi: 10.1080/10508406.2011.59171

  • Bhat, M. (2016). The predictive power of reasoning ability on academic achievement. International Journal of Learning, Teaching and Educational Research, 15(1), 79-88.

  • Chandra, R. (2015). Collaborative learning for educational achievement. IOSR Journal of Research & Method in Education (IOSR-JRME), 5(3), 2320-7388. doi: 10.9790/7388-0534262

  • Chinn, C. A., & Samarapungavan, A. L. A. (2009). Conceptual change—multiple routes, multiple mechanisms: A commentary on Ohlsson (2009). Educational Psychologist, 44(1), 48-57. doi: 10.1080/0046152080261629

  • Darling-Hammond, L., Flook, L., Cook-Harvey, C., Barron, B., & Osher, D. (2020). Implications for educational practice of the science of learning and development. Applied Developmental Science, 24(2), 97-140. doi: 10.1080/10888691.2018.153779

  • Ekaterina G. & Suzana S. (2016). Basic principles of “Collaborative Learning”. European Scientific Journal, 17(2011). doi: 10.19044/esj.201.v17n0p%25p

  • Ekwunife-Orakwue, K. C., & Teng, T. L. (2014). The impact of transactional distance dialogic interactions on student learning outcomes in online and blended environments. Computers & Education, 78, 414-427. doi: 10.1016/j.compedu.2014.06.01

  • Fatimah, F., Rajiani, S., & Abbas, E. (2020). Cultural and individual characteristics in adopting computer-supported collaborative learning during covid-19 outbreak: Willingness or obligatory to accept technology? Management Science Letters, 11(2), 373-378. doi: 10.5267/j.msl.2020.9.03

  • Felton, M., Garcia‐Mila, M., Villarroel, C., & Gilabert, S. (2015). Arguing collaboratively: Argumentative discourse types and their potential for knowledge building. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 85(3), 372-386. doi: 10.1111/bjep.1207

  • Ghadi, I. N., Bakar, K. A., Alwi, N. H., & Talib, O. (2013). Measuring critical thinking skills of undergraduate students in Universiti Putra Malaysia. International Journal of Asian Social Science, 3(6), 1458-1466.

  • Grosser, M. M., & Nel, M. (2013). The relationship between the critical thinking skills and the academic language proficiency of prospective teachers. South African journal of education, 33(2). doi: 10.15700/saje.v33n2a63

  • Hou, H. T. (2009). A framework for dynamic sequential behavioral pattern detecting and automatic feedback/guidance designing for online discussion learning environments. Raquel Hijon-Neira, IntechOpen.

  • Jeong, A., Clark, D. B., Sampson, V. D., & Menekse, M. (2011). Sequential analysis of scientific argumentation in asynchronous online discussion environments. In Puntambekar, S., Erkens, G., & Hmelo-Silver, C. (Eds), Analyzing interactions in CSCL (pp. 207-233). Springer.

  • Jiménez-Aleixandre, M. P. (2007). Designing argumentation learning environments. In Sibel, E. & Jiménez-Aleixandre, M. P. (Eds.), Argumentation in science education (pp. 91-115). Springer.

  • Karthikeyan, C. (2017). A qualitative study on managing millennial mindsets: Awaiting challenges for HR strategists and recruiters. International Journal of Innovative Research in Engineering & Management, 4(1), 601-609. doi: 10.21276/ijirem.2017.4.1.1

  • Kremen, W. S., Beck, A., Elman, J. A., Gustavson, D. E., Reynolds, C. A., Tu, X. M., Sanderson-Cimino, M. E., Panizzon, M. S., Vuoksimaa, E., Toomey, R., Nennema-Notestine, C., Hagler Jr., D. J., Fang, B., Dale, A. M., Lyons, M. J., & Franz, C. E. (2019). Influence of young adult cognitive ability and additional education on later-life cognition. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 116(6), 2021-2026. doi: 10.1073/pnas.181153711

  • Kulatunga, U., & Lewis, J. E. (2013). Exploration of peer leader verbal behaviors as they intervene with small groups in college general chemistry. Chemistry Education Research and Practice, 14(4), 576-588. doi: 10.1039/C3RP00081

  • Lee, M. N. (2004). Global trends, national policies and institutional responses: Restructuring higher education in Malaysia. Educational Research for Policy and Practice, 3(1), 31-46. doi: 10.1007/s10671-004-6034-

  • Lee, C. D. & Smagorinsky, P. (2000). Vygotskian perspectives on literacy research: Constructing meaning through collaborative inquiry. Cambridge University Press.

  • Lim, C., Ab Jalil, H., Ma’rof, A., & Saad, W. (2020a). Peer learning, self-regulated learning and academic achievement in blended learning courses: A structural equation modeling approach. International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning (iJET), 15(3), 110-125. doi: 10.3991/ijet.v15i03.1203

  • Lim, C. L., Ab Jalil, H., Ma’rof, A. M., & Saad, W. Z. (2020b). Self-regulated learning as a mediator in the relationship between peer learning and online learning satisfaction: A study of a private university in Malaysia. Malaysian Journal of Learning and Instruction, 17(1), 51-75.

  • Lin, T. J., Anderson, R. C., Jadallah, M., Nguyen-Jahiel, K., Kim, I. H., Kuo, L. J., Miller, B. W., Logis, H. A., Dong, T., Wu, X., & Li, Y. (2015). Social influences on children’s development of relational thinking during small-group discussions. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 41, 83-97. doi: 10.1016/j.cedpsyh.2014.12.004

  • Lipman, M. (2003). Thinking in education (2nd Ed.). Cambridge University Press.

  • Lohman, D. F., & Lakin, J. M. (2009). Reasoning and intelligence. In R. Sternberg, & S. Kaufman, Handbook of intelligence (2nd Ed.). Cambridge University Press.

  • Maeda, J. (2017). Self-efficacy reduces impediments to classroom discussion for international students: Fear, embarrassment, social isolation, judgment, and discrimination. IAFOR Journal of Education, 5(2), 141-159. doi: 10.22492/ije.5.2.0

  • Md Yunus, A. S., Abu, R., Nor, S. M., Tarmizi, R. A., Bakar, K. A., Ali, W. Z. W., Hamzah, R., & Ismail, H. (2005). Generic skills of Malaysian university students. Bulletin of Higher Education Research. Instititut Penyelidikan Pendidikan Tinggi Negara, (6), 5-6.

  • Miller, B. W., Anderson, R. C., Morris, J., Lin, T. J., Jadallah, M., & Sun, J. (2014). The effects of reading to prepare for argumentative discussion on cognitive engagement and conceptual growth. Learning and Instruction, 33, 67-80. doi: 10.1016/j.learninstruc.2014.04.00

  • Nussbaum, E. M., & Sinatra, G. M. (2003). Argument and conceptual engagement. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 28, 384-395. doi: 10.106/S0361-476X(02)00038-3

  • Nussbaum, E. M. (2008). Collaborative discourse, argumentation, and learning: Preface and literature review. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 33, 345-359. doi: 10.1016/j.cedpsych.2008.06.00

  • Owen, E. A., Razali, A. B., Samad, A. A., & Noordin, N. (2019). Enhancing Libyan students’ English speaking performance through language game and information gap activities. Problems of Education in the 21st Century, 77(1), 110. doi: 10.33225/pec/19.77.11

  • Paul, R. W. (2004). Critical thinking: What every person needs to survive in a rapidly changing world. Sonomata State University, Centre for Critical Thinking.

  • Resnick, I., Davatzes, A., Newcombe, N. S., & Shipley, T. F. (2017). Using relational reasoning to learn about scientific phenomena at unfamiliar scales. Educational Psychology Review, 29(1), 11-25. doi: 10.1007/s10648-016-9371-

  • Reznitskaya, A., Anderson, R. C., McNurlen, B., Nguyen-Jahiel, K., Archodidou, A., & Kim, S. (2001). Influence of oral discussion on written argument. Discourse Processes, 32(2&3), 155–175. doi: 10.1080/0163853X.2001.965159

  • Reznitskaya, A., Kuo, L. J., Clark, A. M., Miller, B., Jadallah, M., Anderson, R. C., & Nguyen‐Jahiel, K. (2009). Collaborative reasoning: A dialogic approach to group discussions. Cambridge journal of education, 39(1), 29-48. doi: 10.1080/0305764080270195

  • Rogoff, B., Baker‐Sennett, J., Lacasa, P., & Goldsmith, D. (1995). Development through participation in sociocultural activity. New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 1995(67), 45-65. doi: 10.1002/cd.2321995670

  • Rogoff, B., Paradise, R., Arauz, R. M., Correa-Chavez, M., & Angelillo, C. (2003). Firsthand learning through intent participation. Annual review of psychology, 54(1), 175-203. doi: 10.1146/annurev.psych.54.101601.14511

  • Hassan Taj, I., Ali, F., Sipra, M., & Ahmad, W. (2017). Effect of technology enhanced language learning on vocabulary acquisition of EFL learners. International Journal of Applied Linguistics & English Literature, 6(3), 11. doi: 10.7575/aiac.ijalel.v.6n.3p.262

  • Tan, B. S., & Wong, S. L. (2020). Learning principles of accounting in ICT-supported learning environments of Malaysian secondary schools: Future-oriented approach. Research and Practice in Technology Enhanced Learning, 15(1), 1-23. doi: 10.1186/s41039-020-00128-

  • Tella, A., Tella, A., Adika, L. O., & Toyobo, M. O. (2008). Relationship among demographic variables and pupils’ reasoning ability. Electronic Journal of Research in Educational Psychology, 6(3), 709 – 728.

  • Tyson, W. (2011). Modeling engineering degree attainment using high school and college physics and calculus course taking and achievement. Journal of Engineering Education, 100(4), 760–777. doi: 10.1002/j.2168-9830.2011.tb00035.

  • Uphill, M., Groom, R., & Jones, M. (2014). The influence of in-game emotions on basketball performance. European Journal of Sport Science, 14(1), 76–83. doi: 10.1080/17461391.2012.72908

  • Van Eemeren, F. H. (2017). Argumentative patterns viewed from a pragma-dialectical perspective: Exploring the relationship between argumentative discourse and institutional context. In Prototypical argumentative patterns. (pp. 7-29). John Benjamins Publishing.

  • Voss, J. F., & Wiley, J. (1997). Developing understanding while writing essays in history. International Journal of Educational Research, 27(3), 255-265. doi: 10.1016/S0883-0355(97)89733-

  • Walton, D. (2010). Burden of proof in deliberation dialogs. In P. McBurney, I. Rahwan, S. Parsons & N. Maudet (Eds.), Argumentation in multi-agent systems (pp. 1–22). Springer

  • Weinberger, D. (2011). Too big to know: Rethinking knowledge now that the facts aren’t the facts, experts are everywhere, and the smartest person in the room is the room. Basic Books.

  • Wolfe, C. R. & Britt, M. A. (2008).The locus of the myside bias in written argumentation. Thinking & Reasoning, 14,1–27. doi: 10.100/13546780701527674

  • Zhang, J. & Doughtery Stahl, K. A. (2011). Collaborative reasoning: Language-rich discussions for English learners. The Reading Teacher 65(4), 257-260. doi: 10.1002/TRTR.0100

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

Article ID


Download Full Article PDF

Share this article

Recent Articles