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Evaluating and identifying Online Resources

May 20, 2013 Leave a comment

Luckily, neither the University library system nor popular Internet search engines lacked published materials on the brain and learning and problem-solving methods.

I chose two articles to discuss. One dealt with brain-based learning. The other outlined processes for problem solving.

Eric Jensen (2000) strongly cautioned educators against strictly following brain-based research. He said it could lead to bad teaching. This article outlined several myths about brain-based learning and offered tangible advice for applying brain research in the classroom.

One of the myths was brain-based research could be used to justify good teaching strategies. Jensen (2000) said good teaching was a combination — not of research — but of basic psychology, common sense, and trial and error.

Brain-based research was acceptable to Jensen (2000) only if it  was used to help educators make intentional teaching decisions, not run schools based solely the brain’s biology.

Another article I found helpful was the University of Pennsylvania’s (n.d.) Seven Steps to Problem Solving. The seven steps included:

  1. Defining the problem
  2. Analyzing the problem
  3. Identifying possible solutions
  4. Selecting optimal solutions
  5. Evaluating solutions
  6. Developing action plans
  7. Implementing solutions

This article was helpful because it outlined techniques for performing each of the problem-solving tasks above. For example, when defining a problem, a learner must first be able to understand the difference between hard and soft data or facts vs. opinions. (University of Pennsylvania, n.d.)

When it came to analysis, learners were encouraged to view problems from several viewpoints.

The article also identified strategies for identifying solutions that included brainstorming, focus groups, nominal groups, and application of Delphi methods.

Additionally, learners were given methods for evaluating solutions. These options included t-charts that measured pros and cons as well as weighing and prioritizing criteria.

Implementation was the final step in the process. However strict monitoring of the implementation process and contingency plans were recommended. (University of Pennsylvania, n.d.)

Works cited

Jensen, E. (2000). Brain-Based Learning: A Reality Check. Educational Leadership, 57(7), 76.

University of Pennsylvania. (nd). Seven Steps to Problem Solving. Retrieved from http://www.pitt.edu/~groups/probsolv.html

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Categories: Walden 6115

The Doorway to Professional Learning Communities

May 13, 2013 Leave a comment

Sheala Durant
EDUC-6115-1

I will briefly outline three e-Learning blogs and explain why Instructional Design students might find them helpful.

The Rapid E-Learning blog
http://www.articulate.com/rapid-elearning/

This blog is written by Tom Kuhlmann for members of the Articulate-user community. However, his choice of topics is germane to all instructional designers regardless of software. For example recent posts included ways to improve instructional design skills, debates on whether instructional design degrees were helpful, and ways to create eLearning templates. Finally, Kuhlmann’s blog had distinct categories including:

  • Scenarios for E-Learning
  • Project management for E-Learning
  • Graphic Design and Visuals, and
  • Audio. (Kuhlmann, 2013)

The eLearning Coach
http://theelearningcoach.com/

This e-Learning blog is written by Connie Malamed. She offers practical tips for instructional designers on a range of topics. For example, she recently covered tools for capturing knowledge from subject matter experts, ways to gather visual ideas, and how to adapt in-person trainings into virtual ones. Additionally, Malamed offers “freebies” that include storyboard templates, glossaries, and even a listing of Master’s degree programs in Instructional Design. Walden’s program was on her list. (Malamed, 2013)

E-Learning 24/7
http://elearninfo247.com/

Craig Weiss’ blog is different from the previous two. He focuses on product trends and industry forecasts. He presents regularly at international conferences.  According to his own blog entry, his projections have been more than 90 percent accurate. Many of his recent posts were focused on Learning Management Systems. He discussed LMS user complaints, LMS “ecosystems,” and LMS communities. (Weiss, 2013)

Works cited:

Kuhlmann, T. (2013). The Rapid E-Learning Blog [Blog]. Retrieved from http://www.articulate.com/rapid-elearning/

Malamed, C. (2013). The eLearning Coach [Blog]. Retrieved from http://theelearningcoach.com/

Weiss, C. (2013). E-Learning 24/7 [Blog]. Retrieved from http://elearninfo247.com/

Categories: Walden 6115