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ED 7503 Unit Exercises and Discussions:



Unit 2 Exercises and Discussions
Richard Bloodworth

U2A1 Lessons

Go to the Tips, Resources, and References for Dreamweaver MX and do the included lessons.

I have read the material mentioned above and here is the URL for the lessons:
ED7503DWTutorial.htm --- R.

U2A2 Dreamweaver

Go to the Dreamweaver support site and complete the materials for new Dreamweaver users. Support options include online support groups and built-in tutorials in Dreamweaver. These are accessed through Windows>Answers (tutorials) and Help pull-downs. Help>Dreamweaver Support Forum will link you through your Web browser to the Macromedia help area. There are specific locations for those who are learning to use Dreamweaver. CourseBuilder has a similar site and support network (see Action Assignment 2.4).

I have gone through the Dreamweaver help menu outline looking at each page and reading the ones that are the most helpful to me at this point. Before this course I worked through all of the examples in the Dreamweaver MX 2004 Hands on Training book by Garo Green so I have a fairly good understanding of the functions of the Dreamweaver interface. --- R.

U2A3 Tutorial

Using Dreamweaver, start a small tutorial on a topic about which you are knowledgeable, and post it to your Web site; this tutorial will be completed in the next unit. Your tutorial should be about five or six Web pages and require you to create hierarchical links. For example, a good topic might be a presentation of a family tree. You may include pictures in your tutorial. Be sure to describe the audience for your tutorial.

I am working on a tutorial on a brief history of democracy and I will post that next week at the URL: DemocracyHistoryBrief.htm --- R.

U2A4 Coursebuilder

Complete the built-in tutorial in CourseBuilder.

My CourseBuilder tutorial is found at the URL: discover_nav.htm

U2D1 Prepare Response, Memory and Cognition

Understanding how memory and cognition work is very important in planning instructional media interactions. Based on Chapters 3 and 4 in Clark, prepare a referenced response for this question: What are three concepts you have learned about memory and cognition that will be helpful in the design of instructional media?

One of the most interesting revelations involving how memory and cognition work found in Building Expertise by Ruth Clark involved the experiments with novice and master level chess players. In the experiment chess pieces were placed on a chess board and shown to novice and master level chess players who each then tried to remember the positions of the pieces by memory and by referring back to the board as few times as possible. The master players, not surprisingly, could remember the positions of the chess pieces with fewer referrals back to the chess board but only when the pieces were in logical positions according to the rules of chess. When the pieces were arranged in random positions the novices actually remembered the positions better and with fewer referrals back to the board than the master players. The master players had several possible positions and configurations committed to their long term memories but when the positioning became random the master players became disoriented since the positioning had become meaningless. Another way of imaging this would be to compare the speed of typing between speed typists and beginner typists. Which of these two groups would be able to type faster if presented with a keyboard other than with the familiar QWERTY configuration?

One thought occurred to me as I was considering these experimental results. Is it fact or fiction that some people possess what is called a photographic memory and can burn a photographic image in their mind and then with their eyes closed mentally scan the image to determine the location of objects? Also, there are purportedly savants who can memorize pages in telephone books. But these exceptions fall into the realm of the abnormal so they are not applicable in the realm of general educational practices (however, these people could be studied to unlock the secrets of how they achieve their feats and the results of those studies could perhaps be applied to the science of cognition).

Another concept involved the principle of chunking or grouping ideas or objects. This concept involves the Gestalt principle of grouping objects into manageable groups of, at most, from 5 to 9 objects. Beyond those amounts the perceptive ability of the viewer becomes overwhelmed by what is sometimes referred to as information overload. This is why telephone numbers are written as 404-524-9252 rather than 4045249252 or social security numbers as 123-45-6789 rather than 123456789. Although there might be some exceptions to the rule, in general, it is best to present information in manageable chunks, which are sequentially presented, and not overload the learner with excessive data.

Automaticity is another concept mentioned by Ruth Clark and this involves repetitious behavior that makes reacting a non-thinking response similar to developing a habit. This is something that occurs with assembly work or when repetitious tasks are involved such as those found in drilling exercises.

Another important aspect of effective cognitive practices mentioned in Building Expertise is the use of sight and sound to affect learning. The correct mixture of visual illustrations, text, and sound or narration can enhance and accelerate the learning experience. Richard

References:

Clark, Ruth. (2003). Building Expertise: Cognitive Methods for Training and Performance Improvement. Silver Spring , MD : International Society for Performance Improvement.

Ormrod, Jeanne E. (2004). Human Learning. Upper Saddle River , NJ : Pearson Education, Inc.

From Robert Elmore (instructor):

Richard, while some people can have what we call photographic memories, this is very different from what the chess masters were doing. Simply remember something in a photographic way does not imply understanding, or integrating knowledge into schema. We can use instructional aids, such as graphics, flowcharts, key words etc. so that learners do not need to memorize raw data, especially for adult learners who may only need to reference this on occasion. By applying content in real-world contexts learners will integrate knowledge as needed, and declarative knowledge will be stored in the knowledge domain. This is better than trying to remember all kinds of data.

Comment to Tim,

I guess this applies to your example but when you mentioned the golfer trying a new swing or an athlete going out of his realm it made me think of when Michael Jordan tried switching from basketball to baseball.--- Richard

Comment to Mark:

To determine if music played while learning is distracting or conducive to learning, I think it could make a difference if the music is instrumental or contains lyrics. Also, the style of music could make a difference: soothing atmospheric music could be beneficial to learning and rhythmic hard-driving music might be distracting. A third determining factor might be the volume at which the music is played. --- Richard

U2D2 Managing Cognitive Load, Cognitive Load

Discuss how Dreamweaver and other Web-based authoring tools could be used to help manage cognitive load for the learner. Is it possible that there are situations where there are advantages to increasing cognitive load in a learning or training situation? Is it possible this will only create disadvantages?

Authoring tools can be effective in managing cognitive load since the learner can proceed with the learning regimen at his or her own pace. Also the learner can refer back to the information created by the authoring tools when needed in the manner of a reference manual. Authoring tools can create job aids (such as instructions or directions for use) and referenced-based training (as in software tutorials). Automaticity can be developed with regular use of the educational materials developed with authoring tools through the use of drills, practices, tests, and exercises. The learner can also learn by observing and studying worked examples and by studying educational materials that use visual and auditory modalities, redundancy, and absorbable amounts of information. There are times when too much information (more information than can be realistically absorbed in a given amount of time) presented to the learner is acceptable but this approach would be intended only to introduce the information to the learner who can then return at a future time to the information to delve more deeply into its content. All of these techniques, in addition to the correct use of visuals, sound, and text, can contribute to an effective learning experience. --- Richard

References:

Clark, Ruth. (2003). Building Expertise: Cognitive Methods for Training and Performance Improvement. Silver Spring , MD : International Society for Performance Improvement.

From Alesia:

Hi Richard you bring up valid points in your Post, in particular, automaticity. You state..."
Automaticity can be developed with regular use of the educational materials developed with authoring tools through the use of drills, practices, tests, and exercises. "

Currently I am studying for the CPA exam and I am using the Bisk software. Using this software I am able to go through zillion of drills to practice. The question database is extremely huge and I have yet to have a repeat question, but with each drill session I am gaining confidence. Moreover, now that the CPA exam is no longer paper based but computer based, I get to practice as if I am in a testing mode. I like the idea of using this software since I cannot attend a face to face CPA review course. I must admit that I did attend a free review course and it was overwhelming. The meeting was four hours long and instructors bombard students with information. I left the session feeling dumber than when I went in. It took me several years to regain courage to attempt studying for the CPA exam again. Today, Im using CD roms and am finding it most effective. Thanks for sharing, ---- Lisa

From Kathy Rockteacher:

I agree with your statement that there are times that cognitive load can be increased--when information is introduced but the learner can go back to the information and learn more.
I can see this being done in an introduction to a chapter. Thanks, ---Kathy

From Linda McClaren:

Hello >>>" There are times when too much information (more information than can be realistically absorbed in a given amount of time) presented to the learner is acceptable but this approach would be intended only to introduce the information to the learner who can then return at a future time to the information to delve more deeply into its content."<<<

I agree with your statement. An example of the type of learning you are referring to might be used in case-based scenarios where learners are introduced to information-rich case materials that allow them to practice a variety of learning skills. Through this type of method, students are exposed to a wide range of contexts and can view cases from multiple perspectives. Case-based scenarios can place learners into a situation that they find inherently interesting, can give learners tasks that are complex enough that all of the information is not immediately available, and can provide learners with the opportunity to learn what they are most interested in knowing. (Wilson, Jonassen & Cole, 1993)
Thanks, --- Linda McClaren

Reference:

Wilson, B., Jonassen, D, & Cole, P. (1993). Cognitive Approaches to Instructional
Design. Retrieved October 17, 2004, from http://carbon.cudenver.edu/~bwilson/training.html

Response to my posting from Sandra Mueller:

Alesia,This is a good example of repetition and learning to adapt to the mode the test will be taken in.

This makes me think of the gap in society of haves and have nots. Electronic capabilities just keep advancing and we keep struggling to learn and keep up. We have to remember that most of us in this class are in an elite and educated group. While not our typical audience, there are many who have had neither the practice and possibly not the time or access to equipment to experiement with online resources. Just an observation/insight. --- Sandra

Response under my posting from Alesia Stanley:

Sandra, your observation and instight are right on target in my opinion. I love the use of technology and new places it has taken me. I am not a SME at all, but being in the Capella environment we get to "tinker".

But I am still concerned with the digital divide. The have and have nots. It's not only with technology, but housing, jobs, cars, and basic necessities.

Back to my example of studying for the CPA exam.. I have a PC I have two at my disposal, one at home and one at work. But what about students who do not have an opportunity to practice the exam on PC before testing. Another unfair advantage. Techonology is good, but the divide is getting wider and wider. Thanks for sharing, ---Lisa

Comment to Tim:

As I was teaching English as a second language, I realized how important visuals are in learning and I also witnessed the importance of repetition.--- Richard

Comment to Mark:

To determine if music played while learning is distracting or conducive to learning, I think it could make a difference if the music is instrumental or contains lyrics. Also, the style of music could make a difference: soothing atmospheric music could be beneficial to learning and rhythmic hard-driving music might be distracting. A third determining factor might be the volume at which the music is played. --- Richard

 

 

Unit 2 - Authoring Tools - Dreamweaver With CourseBuilder

This page lists the unit's Objectives and Learning Activities.
Objectives

By the end of this unit, a successful learner should be able to:

  1. Create messages that have appropriately written content and objectives and accommodate learner needs and characteristic..
  2. Create or select visuals that instruct, orient, and/or motivate.
  3. Acquire and apply new technology skills to instructional design practice.
  4. Specify the capabilities of existing and emerging technologies to enhance motivation, visualization, interaction, simulation, and individualization.
  5. Evaluate the capacity of a given infrastructure to support selected technologies.
  6. Assess the benefits of existing and emerging technologies.
  7. Select appropriate participation and motivational strategies.
  8. Produce instructional materials in a variety of delivery formats.
Study

Presentation

Read this Learning Unit's Presentation .

u02s1 Read Clark

Read Chapters 3 and 4 in Clark.

Assignments and Discussions

u02a1 Lessons

Go to the Tips, Resources, and References for Dreamweaver MX and do the included lessons.

u02a2 Dreamweaver

Go to the Dreamweaver support site and complete the materials for new Dreamweaver users. Support options include online support groups and built-in tutorials in Dreamweaver. These are accessed through Windows>Answers (tutorials) and Help pull-downs. Help>Dreamweaver Support Forum will link you through your Web browser to the Macromedia help area. There are specific locations for those who are learning to use Dreamweaver. CourseBuilder has a similar site and support network (see assignment u02a4).

u02a3 Tutorial

Using Dreamweaver, start a small tutorial on a topic about which you are knowledgeable, and post it to your Web site; this tutorial will be completed in the next unit. Your tutorial should be about five or six Web pages and require you to create hierarchical links. For example, a good topic might be a presentation of a family tree. You may include pictures in your tutorial. Be sure to describe the audience for your tutorial.

u02a4 CourseBuilder Tutorial

Complete the built-in tutorial in CourseBuilder.

u02d1 Prepare Response

Understanding how memory and cognition work is very important in planning instructional media interactions. Based on Chapters 3 and 4 in Clark, prepare a referenced response for this question: What are three concepts you have learned about memory and cognition that will be helpful in the design of instructional media? Support your answer with additional resources from your own research.

u02d2 Managing Cognitive Load

Discuss how Dreamweaver and other Web-based authoring tools could be used to help manage cognitive load for the learner. Is it possible that there are situations where there are advantages to increasing cognitive load in a learning or training situation? Is it possible this will only create disadvantages?