Three Perspectives on Teaching and Learning Design
Nicholas D. Fila, Mel Chua, Corey Schimpf, and Farrah Fayyaz9/26/2012 – Design, Cognition, and Learning class notesReleased under a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike 3.0 license – feel free to share! These notes are from a small group class discussion about various lens and frameworks that can be used to thinkabout teaching and learning design. We grouped things into three general lens – in chronological order, they are: (1)the behaviorist view, which focuses on externally viewable stimulus-responses, (2) the cognitive view, which focuseson the internal mental constructs that individual people construct in their heads to organize information, and (3) thesituative view, which considers knowledge to be embodied outside an individual in the artifacts and communitiesthey interact with. They look strikingly different in practice.
Viewpointon mindParallelCS history“The mind is a black box. Wedon't care what happens insideit, only what we see outside.”Behaviorism was developedbefore PCs were widespread.Computer scientists were talkingabout the Chinese Room and the Turing Test, which are both aboutthe computer as black box andthe importance of watchingexternal responses.“The mind is an informationprocessing machine. We modelthe heck out of it.”Cognitive theories bloomed atthe same time as the PCrevolution. Expert knowledgewas a hot CS topic; how do wemodel the decision-makingprocesses of experts using acomputer?“Don't talk about a single mind –talk instead about a network of minds, embodied in a world.”Situative theories came of agearound the same time as theinternet exploded, facilitatingcommunication and socialnetworking across a distance in away humanity had never seenbefore.What isknowing?Knowing is stimulus-response.Individuals develop responses orpatterns or responses to variousstimuli or cues. Knowledge is theorganization of these contextualresponses.Individuals develop schemata tohelp them organize andunderstand new information. Thecloser info is to existingschemata, the easier it is toprocess. Knowledge can beconsidered the extent of one’sschemata, or the concepts oneunderstands.Knowledge is situated withincommunities, which includepeople as well as artifacts.Individual knowing can bethought of as the extent to whichone is integrated into thecommunity, thus knowing isattributed to the system ratherthan the individual.