D2L Comprehension Checks

When communicating verbally, it is a simple task to check the user's comprehension of a new symbol. We can easily ask "Do you understand me?" and the answer can be "yes" or "no". It is not as easy to determine whether an individual really understands the meaning of a tangible symbol, since she cannot talk about it. Therefore, we always build a comprehension check into the communication routine for every new symbol. Essentially, a comprehension check means that each time the learner uses a tangible symbol, he or she must also indicate the corresponding referent.

The comprehension check is included every time the new symbol is used until acquisition criteria have been met. We do not use a "What you touch is what you get" approach, since this may result in a failure to understand the referential meaning of symbols.

Strategies for conducting comprehension checks are explained in detail in the Tangible Symbols instructional materials. Comprehension checks should be eliminated as soon as possible so that the learner is allowed to use tangible symbols just like we use words, without an elaborate routine.