Relative Effects of Self-Paced and Machine-Paced Learning Under Computer-Based Training

Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Douglas A. Johnson, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Heather McGee, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Jonathan Baker, Ph.D.

Fourth Advisor

Anna McCalpin, Ph.D.


The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of a self-paced instruction versus machine-paced instruction using a computerized format. Instructional applications such as Programmed Instruction and Computer-Based Instruction have long touted the benefits of self-pacing (e.g., teaching machines, Personalized System of Instruction), but direct comparisons of different pacing types are lacking. Some preliminary research suggests that self-pacing may be prone to distraction by competing reinforcers and overall poor self-management of time. As such, it may be possible that machine-paced lessons (based on optimal timings) may foster better learning while retaining other beneficial features of CBI (interactivity, flexibility of time and location, etc.).

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access

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