Category Archives: Instructional Design

Situating Aesthetics in Learning

Introduction

Creators of learning interventions have a number of considerations to address for their learners. These concerns include learning objectives, task and skills analysis, intra-learning activities, teacher or trainer and student interactions, assessment strategies, and program or product evaluations. In an effort to ensure the effectiveness of learning interventions, additional strategies and theories have been developed to aid administrators of learning efforts in fostering learning skills and behaviors in their pupils. Among these strategies is self-regulated learning, which endeavors to create students who are primed and oriented to be ideal receptacles of the knowledge that is being conveyed (Nilson, 2013). These theories lay out a variety of activities intended to create more engaged learners through a range of activities that supplement traditional reading and writing. These activities include strategies for 1) setting goals for each learning session, 2) planning how to accomplish learning tasks, 3) directing focus to stay on task, 4) monitoring their mind to avoid distraction, fatigue or discouragement, 5) maintaining motivation to learn, and 6) intermittently evaluating their command of the material being learned (p. 3). Little is included, however, in these theories related to the willingness of the student to participate in such learning activities. If the quest of bettering oneself through the acquisition of knowledge is insufficient motivation for a learner to regulate themselves, how can additional teacher-imposed activities improve student engagement?

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A Theory on Design

Introduction

What is the purpose of a design theory? To try to exhibit to others the reasons and methods you use to produce your work? To attempt to sway others to working and thinking the way you do? To share the secrets of your personal success so that others might experience it too? In endeavoring to write this paper, I am reticent to speak in too many absolutes and to declare too strongly my preference for one mode of thinking or one technique over another for fear of becoming the stereotypical dieter or self-help enthusiast who, having found a way of living that is working for them becomes an evangelist believing that the rest of the world must adopt this way of life as well.

With that in mind, the following sections are presented as a contemplation on several aspects of design, such as what design is, what makes a good designer, what makes a good design, and how to become a designer. 

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Concept for an Interpersonal, Interactive, Traditional School

Today’s world has a variety of available technology such as computers, mobile devices, and video games and the children who are growing up in this world often have ready access and years of experience using such devices. The benefits to such access to technology is the access to the answer of virtually any questions at everybody’s fingertips and instant interactions with people at distant locations, but is all of this instant gratification healthy for developing minds (Mischel, Ebbesen, & Zeiss, 1972)? The charter school that I would design will emphasize interpersonal interactions between the students and teachers in the learning process, it will implement learning activities that will be hands-on and interactive between students and the subject of study, and it will be traditionally structured making minimal use of technological aids in areas where technology isn’t the subject of study. Continue reading “Concept for an Interpersonal, Interactive, Traditional School” »

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History of Instructional Design and My Role in its Future

The history of Instructional Design is one filled with innovation that leverages available technologies to make the task of instruction more efficient. For ages the typical mode of instruction consisted of a teacher, chalkboard, and classroom discussion (Reiser 2001, p. 55). Some challenges that arise from the stereotypical modes of classroom instruction is the typical activity of a teacher lecturing as students sit passively and listen. The bulk of the efforts in development of the field of instructional design have been to flip that paradigm so that students become active participants in their instruction. A major aspect of activating students is to reach them through the lessons in an engaging way that makes them interact with the learning experience, whether mentally, emotionally, or physically. The 20th century brought about many advances in the technology and psychology of instructional design. Continue reading “History of Instructional Design and My Role in its Future” »

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