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Postdoc-Netzwerk: Kognitive Konflikte bei der Mediennutzung

Mit dem Programm unterstützt das IWM exzellente Nachwuchswissenschaftlerinnen und Nachwuchswissenschaftler, die eine akademische Karriere anstreben.

Das IWM hat sich der Förderung des wissenschaftlichen Nachwuchses verpflichtet. Während bereits zahlreiche Institutionen strukturierte Förderprogramme für Doktoranden (z.B. Programm des IWM) anbieten, gibt es bisher kaum geeignete systematische Förderprogramme für die anschließende Postdoktoranden-Phase. Mit dem vom Senatsausschuss Wettbewerb geförderten Postdoktoranden-Netzwerk “Cognitive Conflicts During Media Use” übernimmt das Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien eine Vorreiterrolle bei der Förderung von Postdoktoranden.

Figure 1

Das Postdoktoranden-Netzwerk, welches von den Postdoktoranden weitgehend selbst verwaltet wird, fördert gezielt solche Nachwuchswissenschaftler/-Innen, die nach erfolgreich abgeschlossener Promotion eine akademische Karriere anstreben. Das zentrale Ziel der Fördermaßnamen des Netzwerks besteht darin den beteiligten Postdoktoranden den Aufbau eines eigenständigen Forschungsprofils zu ermöglichen und sie beim Erwerb damit einhergehender Drittmittel zu unterstützen. Zur Erreichung dieses Ziels stehen den Mitgliedern des Postdoktoranden-Netzwerkes unter anderen folgende Ressourcen zur Verfügung.


  • Fördermittel zur Vorbereitung von Drittmittelanträgen
  • Fördermittel für Forschungsaufenthalte im Ausland
  • Fördermittel zur Organisation von Workshops, Mentoring und Training
  • Reisemittel für Konferenzbesuche
  • Mittel zur Förderung der Vereinbarkeit von Beruf und Familie

Das Netzwerk wird von den Professoren des IWM betreut: 

Folgende Projekte werden innerhalb des Netzwerks gefördert:
A. Schüler, AG Multiple Repräsentationen & M. Merkt, Alumnus
Detecting and handling conflicts in dynamic respresentations

Abstract: Digital learning environments including different representation formats are assumed to support learning. However, until now, the effects of possible conflicts between different representation formats have been neglected. In this project, we investigate the effects of conflict between verbal and pictorial information in dynamic audiovisual representations. In particular, we are interested in whether learners detect conflicts and whether conflicts affect learning in terms of information processing (i.e., eye-tracking) and outcome variables (e.g., knowledge test).

A. Schüler, AG Multiple Repräsentationen, E. Domahidi & M. Merkt, beide Alumni
The influence of conflicts in social media profiles on expertise judgments

Abstract: Social media are multi-modal information environments that often include conflicting picture and text-based content. Despite the growing importance of social media for information seeking the impact of conflicting information conveyed through social media profiles hasn’t been investigated yet. The proposed project builds on a first pilot study on the topic and seeks to analyze systematically information processing in conflict rich multi-modal information environments with picture and text-based information. Hence we propose a set of experiments that will investigate further the relationship between conflicting multi-modal information (i.e., conflicts between text and pictures; conflicts within texts) and participants’ expertise judgments as well as their’ perception and memory of the perceived conflict.

D. Becker, AG Soziale Prozesse & A. Schüler, AG Multiple Repräsentationen
The influence of conflict on attention and memory when the solution is (un)clear

Abstract: In the proposed research we aim to study the influence of decisional (i.e., which option to choose) and informational (i.e., which source to trust) cognitive conflicts on attention and memory. Both types of conflict are ubiquitous in everyday life, and might be experienced even more often and more intensely during digital media use, because more choice options are available and more information can be gathered. Previous research has demonstrated that conflict enhances attention and memory of task-relevant features. Importantly, this has mainly been shown for conflicts with a single correct solution (e.g., response conflict in a Stroop task). Decisional and informational cognitive conflicts are, however, characterized by the fact that there is no ‘single correct’ solution. As a consequence, attention and memory might be distributed across multiple features, and could additionally be accompanied by increased levels of uncertainty. The experiments, therefore, investigate the impact of decisional and informational conflicts on attention allocation and memory by using a variety of dependent outcome and online measures (i.e., memory performance, reaction time, mouse tracking data, eye movement data).

M. Ninaus, NG Neuro-kognitive Plastizität, M. Bientzle, AG Wissenskonstruktion & S. Huber, Alumnus
Sensor-based assessment of cognitive conflicts in digital learning environments

Abstract: Dealing with information on the internet is usually a self-guided process and can often lead to cognitive conflicts. Although a medium level of cognitive conflict was found to be beneficial for learning outcomes, empirical evidence regarding cognitive conflicts as a learning strategy is mixed. One of the major problems is the assessment of cognitive conflicts. Current assessment methods are suboptimal and mostly rely on self-reporting techniques. Thus, the aim of the present project is to identify precise, objective and continuous measures which can be used to measure cognitive conflict by using behavioural and physiological parameters (i.e. heart rate, electrodermal activity, mouse trajectories, eye movements, facial expression and head posture).

K. Bernecker, AG Soziale Prozesse & M. Ninaus, Neuro-kognitive Plastizität
No pain, no gain? Investigating motivational effects of game elements in cognitive tasks

Abstract: The literature on serious games and gamification suggests a positive influence of game elements on learning outcomes for a wide-range of topics (e.g., STEM subjects, working memory training). However, the mechanisms by which game elements affect learning outcomes are not well understood. The present research aims to test the effect of three popular game elements (i.e., progress bar, score, context) on motivational and emotional states during engagement in a strenuous working memory task (i.e., n-back), namely positive affect, motivational conflict and subjectively experienced effort. Thereby, Study 1 focuses on the combined effect of these game elements on motivational/emotional states and task performance/persistence. Study 2 aims to replicate the effects and additionally varies the game element of the context to be either artificial (i.e., “brains versus zombies”) or real (i.e., working memory training). As a second aim of our research we will examine individual differences in the effectiveness of game elements. We propose and test whether people who are more motivated by immediate versus delayed rewards (those low in delay of gratification and trait self-control) benefit more from game elements.

H. Meyerhoff, AG Realitätsnahe Darstellungen & M. Ninaus, Neuro-kognitive Plastizität
Cognitive training: The impact of game elements on multiple object tracking

Abstract: Maintaining visual attention for longer periods of time is a demanding task that is involved in almost every human activity ranging from basic perception of higher processes such as the acquisition of new knowledge. While present research findings suggest that this ability can be successfully trained, it requires tremendous investment and effort from the participants in order to yield improvements in visual attention. Engaging in such conventional cognitive trainings is, more often than not, accompanied by the cognitive conflict of turning towards more pleasant activities and thereby avoiding the cognitive challenge of training. To reduce this cognitive conflict, game elements might be a helpful supplement to training environments. In the present project, we therefore examine how individual game elements affect performance as well as motivation in a highly demanding visual attention paradigm. More specifically, we investigate the effect of points/feedback, leaderboards, and theme/narrative on performance, performance over time, and self-reported motivation in a multiple object tracking paradigm. We thereby aim to contribute to a better understanding of the impact of game elements on performance as well as enhancements of the underlying attentional resources.