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ED 7503 Unit Exercises and Discussions:


Unit 8 Exercises and Discussions
Richard Bloodworth

u8d2 Learning Management Systems: Examine the features and flexibility of WebCT and Blackboard.com as online delivery and authoring systems.

Both of the these learning management systems have:

tools for creating learning environments

content building materials

asynchronous courseroom

discussions, mail, whiteboard

instructor-authored calendar

instructor's evaluations

connect to Internet

can use text and graphics


WebCT:

Use Html function

HTML creator

Spell check

Search engine

Announcements

Breadcrumbs

profiles

expand/collapse capability

progress record

set number of records per page

draft box

compile

compose message


Blackboard:

Several languages

Can handle thousands of learners

Virtual classroom for synchronous learning

Contents can be shared and reused

Chat

timed on-line quizzes, tests

user directory

address book

personal information

add/remove buttons

customize background colors

help menu

technical support


u08d3 Real World Learning

Application of learning to the "real world" is essential for effective use. For example, solving complex problems improves higher order thinking and retention. Chapter 11 in Clark examines the concept of problem-centered instruction. Post a referenced response to the following: Cite an example where problem-centered instruction would be effective while using the tools discussed in this course; use your reading and other references you may have to support your contention.

Problem-centered learning and instruction is focused, experiential learning organized around the investigation and resolution of real-world problems. A problem-centered curriculum offers authentic experiences that encourage active learning, support knowledge construction, and naturally integrate school learning with real life experiences.

With this approach students become actively engaged problem solvers, identifying the root problems and the conditions needed for a correct solution. By so doing they are pursuing meaning and understanding and become self-directed learners. In this method, teachers are problem-solving colleagues who model interest and enthusiasm for learning and are cognitive coaches who nurture an environment conducive to open inquiry.

Of the four architectures of learning (receptive, directive, guided discovery, exploratory), this approach is really the definition of guided discovery, as it is about solving a problem through experimentation and discovery. There are many examples such as solving mathematics or geometry word problems (such as what is the area of a triangle with sides 13cm x 14cm x 15cm?) and imagining socially related problems such as having the students become part of a jury to determine the innocence or guilt of a hypothetical crime or to determine the truth or falsity of a theory or hypothesis. The scientific method which uses hypothesis, experimentation, observation, analysis, and conclusion also involves this concept. To have students listen to a patient's symptoms to arrive at a diagnosis of a disease or condition is one example of using the problem-centered approach to learning. Another example is to determine the best method of doing a particular task with given materials, resources and time. Another is a detective approach in determining a cause of a particular event given the information of the current circumstances of the event in question. --- Richard

Reference:

Clark, R. C. (2003). Building expertise: Cognitive methods for training and performance improvement . International Society for Performance Improvement: Silver Spring , MD.

Torp, L. & Sage, S. (2002). Problems as Possibilities: Problem-Based Learning for K–16. Alexandria , VA : Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development.

u08d4 Forming a Basis Collaboration Tools

Using the list of collaboration tools you created for u08d1, describe how these tools would form the basis for an online learning program. What necessary features would be missing from this set of tools?

All of the ones listed in the u8d2 discussion ( tools for creating learning environments, content building materials, asynchronous course room, discussions, mail, whiteboard , instructor-authored calendar , instructor's evaluations , connect to Internet , text and graphics, html, HTML creator, spell check, search engine, announcements, breadcrumbs, profiles, expand/collapse capability, progress record, set the number of records per page, draft box, compile feature, compose message, use of several languages,synchronous learning, contents that can be shared and reused, chat , timed on-line quizzes and tests , user directory , address book , personal information , add/remove buttons , customize background colors , help menu , technical support) can be used to form an interactive learning environment.

I think a combination of all of the features would form a complete set of online learning tools. WebCT and Blackboard each are missing some of each as indicated in the u8d2 chart. I think the chat or synchronous learning feature would be a useful addition to WebCT so that some real time learning and communication could occur. --- Richard

Reference:

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

D2 comment about editing posts

I recently submitted a post that had a link made by the “use HTML” feature using html code. I followed the example that someone had previously posted. The example had a forward slash ( / ) at the end of the URL but after I posted it I found that the link did not work ( “page can not be found …..”). I was not able to change it so I ended up having to call the Capella main office to get the instructor's telephone number so that I could call him so that he could send the submission back to me so that I could fix it. I think that is a lot of trouble for one misplaced punctuation mark.

Perhaps there should be a compromise about the editing of submissions by having a period of time, such as 3 days, in which the postings could be edited or deleted. --- Richard

D3 Comment to Artemis: Learning to fly is definitely a “real world” endeavor so I think it would involve a lot of problem-centered learning.

I have always had in the back of my mind considering the possibility of learning how to fly an airplane. What initial steps should someone take? I have got the Microsoft flight simulator on my computer but my only experience in flying is flying as a passenger in commercial airline flights. So how much is involved in an adult starting from scratch learning to fly. Any thoughts, suggestions, or references you have would be appreciated.

I have enjoyed reading your postings as they are expressive and thorough. Thank you, --- Richard

D4 Comment to Adrienne: Thanks for that great list of resources and comparisons of the various learning and collaboration tools: --- Richard

Comment to Tim: I agree that real time brainstorming and sharing of ideas is essential to learning and to creativity in general. That can be done with online chat sessions and telephone calls and, of course, the old fashioned way -- in person meetings. Thanks for your post and your descriptive listing, --- Richard

 
Unit 8 - Online Authoring Systems

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. Acquire and apply new technology skills to instructional design practice.
  2. Specify the capabilities of existing and emerging technologies to enhance motivation, visualization, interaction, simulation, and individualization.
  3. Evaluate the capacity of a given infrastructure to support selected technologies.
  4. Assess the benefits of existing and emerging technologies.
  5. Consider multiple design and development models.
  6. Select appropriate media and delivery systems.
  7. Analyze the learning outcomes and select appropriate strategies.
  8. Analyze the instructional context and select appropriate strategies.
  9. Select appropriate participation and motivational strategies.
Study
Presentation

Read this Learning Unit's Presentation .

u08s1 Read Clark


Read Chapter 11 in Clark.

Assignments and Discussions
u08d1 Attributes of Web-based Collaboration Tools

Create a list of attributes of Web-based collaboration tools that could form the basis of an online learning program. Post your list and your rationale for including items in the explanation of the list in the discussion area.

u08d2 Learning Management Systems


Examine the features and flexibility of WebCT and Blackboard.com as online delivery and authoring systems.

u08d3 Real World Learning

Application of learning to the "real world" is essential for effective use. For example, solving complex problems improves higher order thinking and retention. Chapter 11 in Clark examines the concept of problem-centered instruction. Post a referenced response to the following: Cite an example where problem-centered instruction would be effective while using the tools discussed in this course; use your reading and other references you may have to support your contention.

u08d4 Forming a Basis


Using the list of collaboration tools you created for u08d1, describe how these tools would form the basis for an online learning program. What necessary features would be missing from this set of tools?