Fitting the Pieces Together

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Text messages.  Email.  Google searches.  Facebook.  Twitter.  Instagram.  Video conferencing.  We are inundated with technology on a daily basis, so it is only befitting that the educational sector see it as a viable method of instruction.  Through this course, I have been introduced to so many different resources available to educators.  I must admit though, I was quite overwhelmed the first two weeks of the course.  I am so happy that I was tenacious in my desire to successfully complete this course!

 During the first week of my learning theories course, I identified the cognitive theory as my theory of choice because I felt it coincided with how I learn best. The cognitive theory allows the learner to create knowledge through the learning experience.  This theory recognizes that learning does not occur in a bubble; it is a collective effort made of several interactions with the learner’s environment.  According to Ertmer and Newby, “Cognitivist theories emphasize making knowledge meaningful and helping learners organize and relate new information to existing knowledge in memory,” (1993).

 Based on what I have learned the past several weeks, my view on how I learn has not changed.  What has changed is my knowledge of various learning theories and how critical it is to consider the learning preference of my current and future students.  The use of technology can be an effective instructional tool only if it is implemented properly.  According to Lim, “Learners may get lost due to the navigation aspects of interface, become de-motivated or fail to make connections in the knowledge they have constructed; as a result, they become disengaged from the learning process,” (2004).  As a result, the technology has to be appropriate and related to the learning.

 The primary role of technology in my learning is it allows me to stay current on the latest and greatest resources in the industry.  Knowing what’s available helps me to maintain my competitive edge in an industry that is always changing.

 

Ertmer, P.A. & Newby, T.J. (1993).  Behaviorism, cognitivism, cognitivism: Comparing critical features from an instructional design perspective.

Lim, C. P. (2004). Engaging learners in online learning environments.  TechTrends: Linking Research and Practice to Improve Learning, 48(4), 16–23.

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