Praise works – even if it’s from a machine
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Praise works – even if it’s from a machine

Research shows that people are so hard-wired to respond to praise that even computer icons work.

The experiment: An e-learning program included an icon – a tiger – that reinforced correct answers by telling the trainee “Good job” and other words of praise. Trainees who had the tiger icon performed better than those who didn’t. They perceived the tiger to be intelligent, helpful and trustworthy.

The take-home for trainers is clear: Don’t underestimate the impact of positive reinforcement on learning, retention and performance.

Source: Lee, Jong-Eun Roselyn, et al., The Case for Caring Colearners: The Effects of a Computer-Mediated Colearner Agent on Trust and Learning, Journal of Communication 57 (2007), pp. 183-204.

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