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Programmed Instruction

eveIopments into programmed instruction.

In the 1950s many oI the ideas that had surIaced earlier were clariIied
and popularised. Programmed instruction was among the Iirst, in
historical signiIicance Ior instructional developments and analytical
processes, important to instructional design. This Iorm oI instruction is
based on the behavioural learning theories.
The early programmed instruction was oIten delivered by some Iorm
oI teaching machine` but later it brought the concept oI interactive
text. The programmed instruction movement extended the use oI
printed selI - instruction to all school subject areas to adult and
vocational education as well (Romiszowski,1997). Later as the
technology developed other media, such as radio, television video and
computer, came oI use.
The researches and Iindings oI Skinner were oI great importance Ior the
developments in program instruction and beIore going any Iurther I
would like to inIorm about his Iindings.

3.1 Burrhus Frederic Skinner (1904-1990).
Skinner continued with the developments oI the earlier behaviourists
and carried out many experiments on animals (based on laboratory rats
and pigeons, Skinners box). He came to that conclusions, that the best
way to guarantee that an animal learns how to make a particular
response to a stimulus, is not to give it reinIorcement every time it
perIorms the response, but with what Skinner termed as an intermitted
schedule oI reinIorcement. Skinner has shown in his researches that
shaping an animal`s behaviour to secure that it keeps the response (that
is, to make the response whenever it meets the appropriate stimulus),
involves a speciIic and rather complex association between response
and reinIorcement. It is not necessary to reward behaviour every time it
He distinguished careIully between those responses which are triggered
by known stimulus and those responses which occur without any
apparent stimulus. He called this type oI behaviour operant, and he was
most interested in using reinIorcements to condition this operant
behaviour because it is the most common type oI human behaviour`.
Skinner relates more to Thorndikes trial and error system rather than
Pavlov`s procedure. Skinner waited Ior a change behaviour to occur
and then systematically set out to reinIorce the desired behaviour. This
procedure, in reaching the desired goal, is termed as shaping`. An
extinction process can also be required iI one wants to eliminate a
response completely, punishment is not the most eIIective technique
even though it will distinguish or surpress the rates oI response. More
eIIective is, not to reinIorce the undesired behaviour and corresponding,
to reinIorce the desire behaviour (Richey.R., 1986)
Skinner applied his Iindings on animal learning to the teaching oI
children and it lead him to blame teachers Ior not employing eIIective
schedules oI reinIorcement` in the classroom. In a chapter oI his book
1968 Why teachers Iail` he argued that Iormal education is usually
based on aversive control`. Teaching rests on punishment and ridicule
Ior unsuitable behaviour rather than showing a consideration Ior the
shaping and reinIorcement oI responses to be learned. He also said that
lessons and examinations are designed to show what pupils do not
know and cannot do, rather than to expose and build upon what they do
know and are able to learn. ThereIore, he argued, teachers Iail to
shape` their children`s behaviour suIIiciently, leading to inappropriate
learning or to learned responses that are quickly Iorgotten (Skinner,
1968). Skinner questioned the way reinIorcements were conducted in
schools and Iound out that many minutes and in many cases many
hours or even days may intervene between children`s responses and
teacher`s answers. He calculated that during the Iirst Iour years oI
education 50,000 reinIorcements were essential to get eIIicient
mathematical behaviour, but in a traditional class situation it would
just be possible Ior the teacher to give only a Iew thousand. To provide
the learners with enough reinIorcement would be by an instrumental aid
(Spencer. K., 1991)
Skinner went on to design the Iirst learning programs Ior use on
teaching machines in an attempt to apply his theory to education.

3.2 Behavioural concepts and the implication for Instructional
Skinner`s shaping technique have been used as overall guide to
constructing instructional materials, as well as to deliver instruction
and evaluating perIormances.
His model Stimulus - Response is described by Romiszowski (1997)

'that learning has occurred when a speciIic response is elicited by
speciIic situation or stimulus with a high degree oI probability. The
more likely and predictable the response, the more eIIicient the learning
has been.. These attempt to shape human behaviour by presenting a
gradual progression oI small units oI inIormation and related tasks to
the learner. At each stage the learner must actively participate by
perIorming the set task. He is then immediately supplied with
Ieedback in the Iorm oI correct answer (p.16)

The reliance upon speciIic goal statements is a device that also allows
the learners to know speciIically when they have achieved their goal.
By using such a statement, students can monitor their own progress.
Formulated by this linear approach Skinner introduced in the early
1950s the 'teaching machine which imparted subject matter in easy to
learn, step-by-step sequences (Hackbarth, S. 1966).
The linear approach to learning lead to many attempts in developing a
scientiIic approach to learning.
Robert Gagne (1965) published a hierarchical list oI eight categories oI
learning. This list is proceeding Irom very simple conditioning-type
learning, up to complex learning, such as involved in problem solving.

1. Signal learning
2. Stimulus - response learning
3. Chaining
4. Verbal chaining
5. Discrimination learning
6. Concept learning
7. Rule learning
8. Problem-solving
(Romiszowski.A.J. 1997, p18)

Gagnes classiIication relates to other learning and teaching models
such as; 1. Signal learning relates to the classical (Pavlovian)
conditioning; 2. Stimulus-response learning, 3. Chaining, 4.Verbal
chaining and 5.Discrimination learning relate to the operant
conditioning model (Skinner); 6. Concept learning and 7. Rule learning
relates to the 'ruleg techniques; and 8. Problem-solving relates to
learning by discovery.

In the beginning oI the 60s Bob Mager wrote a book in the praise oI
behavioural objectives. It is build on the simple conclusion that iI one
deIines learning as a change in behaviour, then the teacher may be wise
to deIine the aims or objectives oI his lessons in terms oI the behaviour
patterns he wishes to establish.
According to Mager, the essential ingredients in behavioural objective

1. A statement oI what the student should be able to /4 at the
end oI the learning session (the terminal behaviour)
2. The .43/9438 under which he should be able to exhibit the
terminal behaviour.
3. The 89,3/,7/ to which he should be able to perIorm (the
(Romiszowski.A.J., 1997, p.20).

Mager popularised the precise statement oI objectives Ior programmed
instruction and his approach became more widely applied to the
designing oI instructional material.
Bloom and his colleagues met over Iive years' periods and the result oI
their work was The Taxonomy oI Educational Objectives. There,
instructional outcomes were divided into three domains-cognitive,
aIIective and psychomotor - with the cognitive domain dealing with
thinking, the aIIective domain with Ieelings, and the psychomotor
domain with physical movement (Spencer, K., 1991).
This taxonomy became a standard to many concerned with curriculum
planning and instructional design. Bloom, Krathwohl and Harrow
developed sub-divisions Ior the three categories and Iollowing are the
Major Classes oI Taxonomies oI Educational Objectives (based on
Bloom et al.,1956; Krathwohl et al., 1964 Harrow,1972)

Bloom et al., : cognitive Domain

Krathwohl et al., : Affective Domain

1.00 RECEIVING (attending)

arrow: Psychomotor Domain

K., 1991p.54).

This hierarchical sub-division in the Cognitive Domain and in the
AIIective Domain is arranged so that the lower levels are prerequisites
to the higher levels. This taxonomy was to provide a theoretical
Iramework which could be used to Iacilitate communication among
examiners (Spencer, K., 1991p.54).
Deriving Irom the behavioural school oI thought oI speciIying
objectives the systematic approach, or system engineering, rose in
instructional designing.

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