The Effect of Multi-mode Stimuli of Feedforward and Eye Tracking on Metacognition— An Exploratory Study Using Digital Dictionaries

Xuesong Zhai*, Xiaoyan Chu, Nanxi Meng, Minjuan Wang, Michael Spector, Chin Chung Tsai, Hui Liu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Metacognition is regarded as a retrospective skill promoting learners’ learning performance, deep thinking, and academic well-being. Stimulated Recall (SR) is regarded as a reliable approach to inspiring learners’ metacognition in the classroom. However, the outbreak of COVID-19, causing widespread class suspension, may impair the effect of SR on cultivating distance learners’ metacognition. The current study, employing multi-mode stimuli of learners’ eye movements and feedforward, aimed to develop the effect of SR on activating learners’ metacognition in remote settings. Forty-eight university graduates were recruited to participate in an eye-tracking experiment using digital dictionaries. Their feedforward and eye movements were collected as multi-mode stimuli. By reviewing the consistency and discrepancies between their feedforward and eye movements, participants were invited to conduct an SR interview, which stimulated them to retrospect on their prior cognitive behaviors. The results of the metacognition scale pre-post test showed that learners’ metacognitive skills were significantly improved by the stimulated recall with multi-mode stimuli. The findings theoretically enrich the metacognition strategy in the Cognitive Theories of Multimedia Learning, and practically extend the implementation of stimulated recall in distance learning contexts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-227
Number of pages15
JournalEducational Technology and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Digital dictionary
  • Eye tracking
  • Metacognition
  • Multi-mode stimuli
  • Stimulated recall

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Engineering


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