including strategic impact of learning on business, instructional design, and delivery and assessment. One message is quite clear from each presentation and class: The success of business hinges on strong education and training programs.
My entire Master’s program was validated on Tuesday, when the presenter Dr. Allison Rossett (of SDSU fame) asked the audience if they could name any theorist connected with Constructivism. When I called out John Dewey, she actually turned around with her eyebrows raised (surprised to hear an answer), and said “Very good! Well done! Congratulations for that!” Ha! You should all feel gratified, because I know you all would have been able to answer the same.Web 2.0 Dominates the Discussion
The many classes and presentations helped me realize with even more emphasis that technology is changing how we deliver education and learning. Web 2.0 technology dominated the classes at the conference and bookstore. Most organizations are hiring staff that has experience using the technologies described in chapter five. In our reading, the six general categories of software support tools show us the very many different tools we have at our fingertips for developing learning content. The software helps us move the theories of learning into the practical world and provide teachers with a significant opportunity to reach out to students anywhere and anytime. I expect
that these changes also impact the competencies required of teachers. Over time, new teachers will need to have technical skills in these areas to not only interact with such technology, but actually create and deliver learning with them.
Technology is Only as Good as the Content: The Experts Weigh In
I personally like the concept mapping software. I think that it is very useful to have help in organizing the learning objectives and assessments. It is critical that all of us understand that no matter how flashy the technology or slick the delivery, if we do not incorporate sound pedagogical and andragogical practices, the technology is useless. A presentation, a movie, or a game can still be pointless and mundane. Teachers still need to conceive powerful teaching concepts that reach students regardless of the delivery method. I will quote some points from Dr. Rossett's class:Instructional Design Greatness can only occur when the tool:
1. Shows the learner that the lesson is all about them and ties to their priorities and goals
2. Is vivid and authentic, realistic, and close to the actions of their day
3. Is full of experiences and examples with a progressively building checklist that leads to action
4. Builds the learners confidence by allowing them to experience success, but also experience something that stretches them farther
5. Provides a guidance system or systematic choices which give support, information or advice
Michael Allen of Allen Interactions (http://www.alleninteractions.com) is very well known in instructional design circles. His company regularly creates compelling learning modules for organizations all over the world. He said that teachers and instructional designers must use technology to create something meaningful, memorable and motivational. He likes to use the Corrective Feedback Paradigm (CFP) as a method to teach students of all ages through repetition.
Dr. Jane Bozarth spoke about how teachers can use social media, like blogs and Facebook to teach. I purchased her book Social Learning and recommend you check it out. Her message is that we shouldn’t use technology for the sake of saying we have and use that type of technology. We need to really understand how that type of technology can improve the learning situation and we need to be able to demonstrate how that type of technology helps us achieve our outcomes. She is using blogs and wikis in her work to help inspire connections with the group and collaboration. http://bozarthzone.blogspot.com/2011/05/this-is-what-social-learning-looks-like.html
Our learners are changing too. They use these tools all the time for personal use, but maybe not in learning. We can harness their natural interest in these technologies and help them interact with us (and each other) on a new plane.
Multi-media has many impacts. It definitely can provide rapid delivery and rapid consumption of content. It also allows learners to learn based upon their own individual needs, motives, and
timeframes. This relates to the learner control talked about in our book. Technology helps us meet many different learning styles and preferences, and it can be very flexible. Through the learning technologies, students can access educational content anywhere and anytime. Also, technology is becoming more cost-effective than traditional teaching mediums.
“The number one benefit of technology is that it empowers people to do what they want to do. It lets people be creative. It lets people be productive. It lets people learn things they didn't think they could learn before, and so in a sense it is all about potential.” Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft
We want to blend the power of technology with the soul of the teacher. If we can do this, we can
reach any student anywhere. Are you ready?
reach any student anywhere. Are you ready?