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From understanding learners’ adaptive motivation and emotion to designing social learning companions

Information for 8th-grade teachers interested in the research project “Motivated learning with new technologies”

Project aims

The aim of this project is to test a learning technology that can offer students learning tasks tailored to their individual needs. Here, the emphasis is on adapting the learning process to the different emotions and motivational learning requirements of each student, e.g. through the selection of appropriate tasks, materials and learning aids, and by adjusting the work pace.


From February 2021 to December 2021, we plan to test our new learning technology on interested students. With our learning technology ‘Betty’s Brain,’ we would like to find out whether adaptive learning technologies that also take into account differences in students’ learning motivation, besides their individual achievement-related learning requirements, can encourage students’ joy of learning.

To determine to what extent playing the game can actually encourage motivation, we will survey the students before, during and after the game with a questionnaire asking how motivated they are. We also want to find out how the learning group is getting along with the new learning technology by means of observations and the use of a smartwatch to measure students’ pulse frequency during the learning situation. There are no risks to participation.

Further information

The study will be carried out during a project week organized separately with each school in a classroom context. Learners will work with the topic of climate change using the learning technology. Members of our team at the University of Potsdam will of course be present to answer questions and support teachers and learners. In the first session, a short questionnaire will be filled out assessing knowledge and learning motivation around the topic of climate change. Subsequently, a UP team member will show the learner group how the learning technology works. In the following sessions, the students will work with the learning technology and also in groups. Knowledge of the content and learning motivation will be assessed during the game. In the final session, the learning group will again fill out a short questionnaire on the topic of climate change and their learning motivation.


Please direct any questions about the project to:!