CCE Theses and Dissertations

The Effects of Multimedia on Selected Critical Thinking Skills of Non At-Risk and At-Risk Students

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences


Steven R. Terrell

Committee Member

Laurie Dringus

Committee Member

John A. Scigliano


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationship between multimedia instruction and critical thinking as measured by the five subscales of the Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking Analysis (WGCTA). A high school student population totaling 121 ninth grade, language arts students participated in the research. Since the multimedia experience is an enhancement on traditional course presentation, it was hypothesized that the experimental group, those students participating in multimedia, would achieve higher scores on the WGCT A. There was also interest in a possible relationship between students included in the group determined, "at-risk" and critical thinking. Those in the at-risk group were identified by a set of criteria indicating poor academic performance, and there was interest in whether the multimedia instruction would also benefit this subgroup. Data analysis indicated that the use of multimedia resulted in a consistent improvement in critical thinking. The multimedia group achieved higher scores than the control group for all of the subscales of the WGCTA except in the subscale, assumptions. The at-risk students generally scored lower than non at risk students, however, this population received greater benefit from the intervention in the interpretation subscale. Implications for further research are discussed.

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