This study analyzed the impact of different analogical learning approaches (analogies or metaphors) integrated with different presentation modalities (pictures or texts) on middle school students’ learning performance of electricity with supporting evidence from their eye movement behaviors. Eighty ninth-grade middle school students were randomly assigned into four groups to receive four different versions of an online electricity learning program, including pictorial analogies, textual analogies, pictorial metaphors, and textual metaphors. Data regarding students’ eye movement behaviors were collected simultaneously during their online learning. All the students took a pre-test, post-test, and retention test covering their comprehension of electricity concepts. Our results revealed that the analogy group provided more mapping and integration behaviors between the analog and target concepts about electricity, resulting in gaining better performance than the metaphor group. Additionally, students receiving pictorial modality generated more mapping and integration behaviors between the analog and target concepts, resulting in a better understanding of electricity concepts than students learning with textual modality. The associated implications for analogical learning approaches and presentation modalities concerning science learning and eye movement behaviors are also discussed in the paper.
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