Distance Education

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Blog Assignment : Fitting the Pieces Together

 Fitting the Pieces Together.

In all honesty, my view cannot be interpreted like change. It is better represented as “enhanced” by ever increasing pace of information every week. My ability to improve, access educational resources, and people’s network through blog websites. Finally, I learned more of new methods, skills, tools, software information, and gained knowledge on how to improve my personalized learning strategies, and how to integrate technology in instructional design process. 

In the past few weeks, I learned a lot as stated in my Learning Theory Matrix. It gave me the ability to  synthesize the various learning theories, by expanding my mental capabilities, comparing notes  and disseminating information as part of my work process, building personal network, and responding to various perspectives /feedback from my peers.

Responding to what role does Technology play on my learning? I will prefer to reverse the question to ask: How can technology better influence learning?
As stated in my discussion this week,  learners benefit from the use of a particular technology  when the method provided by the technology represents the salient part of student learning expectation, tasks, and aligns with the instructional design  usefulness of the concept as stated by the facilitator.

My experience in this course has been a fascinating one. I had no dull moment.  I saved a lot of resources, websites, software’s, and articles for future reference.  I would like to say that technology enhanced and encouraged me as a tool to dig dipper into numerous aspects of learning theories, learning styles, and resources out there.
Jonassen (1996) and other researchers have shown  that learning process might be changed as an effect of predominant media being used, because technology  or media has been successfully  evaluated  as a type of cognitive- mind tool.
 Technologies assist me to relate, associate and organize new ideas with previous knowledge.  In my understanding, I use technology for everything. I found out that a method may be applicable but the process may time-consuming. Technology has helped me to find the right tool for trade and complete learning and work process in a timely fashion.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Connectivism Blog Assignment

Mind mapping is a very valuable experience to me as an adult learner. Currently my mind map is simple due to my experience, but I look forward to see what my mind map will look like 6 months from now, or at the end of my program at Walden.
How has your network changed the way you learn?
As a self-directed learner, I take pride in working hard and getting comfortable by applying my learning experience. I like to connect to people if there is a need to do so. I have not been chatty about social network online because I so much value my privacy. My new experience at Walden has exposed me to meaningful social online network.
In the past, I used online search for fact finding, researched new ideas, and compared prices before shopping.  Now, my biggest learning tool is the Internet. With my online learning at Walden, I frequently log in to catch up with my peers, read responses, and respond to assignment or just browsing for in-depth knowledge about a topic of discussion. I am also intrigued by the diversity of perception of other learners on our discussion board.

Which Digital tool best facilitate learning for you?
As indicated by my mind map, I rely solely on the internet, the Walden resources and my peers to get work done.  I call at times when I need help with the technology aspect of the assignment, and I use the facilitator’s suggestions to complete my assignments as required.  I will prefer to conclude that I am using a combination of resources. 

How do you gain new knowledge when you have questions?
I search professional websites, Google, and use the resources provided by Walden University.  I take time to read the materials, and at times, I read twice to be comfortable that I know what to do. I relate new concepts to practical examples and experiences.  I explore additional readings and suggestions from my peers and informed parties. My new exposure to blogs has been another avenue to new knowledge.  When I struggle with technological application, I rely on my son who is a sophomore at Drexel University. He has been very supportive.

In what ways does your personal learning network support or refute the central tenets of connectivism?
George Siemens (2004) connectivism focuses on the integration of technology, social networks, and information in the learning process. If applied correctly, these three elements can lead to more practical experiences.  Though my mind map does not reflect equal use of the three elements, I feel that I am in a complete new world of knowledge and engagement by attending online courses.  I am using the knowledge gained to mold my thoughts, interpret, and create personalized learning strategies.
 Siemens, states that …” new information is continually being acquired and the ability to draw a distinction between important and unimportant information is vital.  Ability to recognize when new information alters the landscape based on decisions made yesterday” (Siemens, 2005, para. 24).
With this in mind, it is important for instructional designers to explore old and latest information, interpret and connect learners to make the best use of the combination of information available to them.

 Davis, C., Edmunds, E., & Kelly-Bateman, V. (2008). Connectivism. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from http://projects.coe.uga.edu/epltt/index.php?title=Connectivism


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My Network


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Evaluating and Identifying Online Resources

Week 2 Blog assignment:
This week, I visited couple sites to read more about the brain and information Processing. The first site that stood out was written by Lisa Chipongian.  Retrieved from http://brainconnection.positscience.com/topics/?main=fa/brain-based. This website discussed “brain based learning”. It analyzed the difference between brain compatible education and brain antagonist. There is a strong emphasis on how the brain learns. Page1.   The Organ of Learning Page 2: Twelve Brain/Mind Learning Principles Page 3: Where Did the "12 Principles" Come From?  Practical Use of Brain/Mind Principles     Three Conditions for Learning Page 4: Real-Life Examples     Teaching and the Organ of Learning. Each of the topics discussed the connection of the brain to learning; the twelve principles according to the author are open for further revision. This makes it interesting and useful for learners.
I particularly liked the application of the brain based learning to real- life examples where relaxed alertness, orchestrated immersion, and active processing are believed to occur in successful teaching situations at all levels.

The second site is about “Problem solving skills in Education and life”. These sites featured couple other topics, but I choose to read further on “Problem solving in Design & Science.”
The information is retrieved from:  http://www.asa3.org/ASA/education/think/methods.htm#problem-solving-methods. This site is very basic but clearly described the scientific methods of problem solving in connection with designing training. I feel connected to this statement” In design, a problem is any situation where you have an opportunity to make a difference to make things better.  Whenever you are thinking creatively and critically about ways to increase the quality of life (or to avoid a decrease in quality), you are actively involved in problem solving” I truly agree. The site also link to numerous useful information that I need to revisit. Although, I am very familiar with problem solving model, I am able to connect the ideas to designing learning.  Reflecting on other aspects of what I do or will do when I graduate as an Instructional Designer, Problem solving skills is applicable to any situation.
 Most problem solving models ends with “choose and implement the best alternative” I will like to add that it is vital to re-evaluate the best alternative. This is because, in some situation, the best alternative may not be applicable in a certain situation.
I also read about the myth about Scientific methods by David Snoke, a links to Problem solving skills in Education. This information exposed some of my bias about scientific conclusion on some issues. I look forward to reading more and learning. This is getting more interesting.

Performance Need Analysis

I like this topic. Finally, my organization seems to be getting it. Performance need analysis is very crucial to the success of designing a novel idea, or training.  The purpose is to analyze and verify the need for training. I often get calls for a new training need just as you stated and at times a refresher course.
I attended a conference on designing learning, and since then my approach to responding to this request has changed.  I am now asking for training request in writing, and then I use the request to initiate the first interview. During the interview, I have a general questionnaire that is primarily designed to inquire the needs for training.  I usually hand a copy of the questionnaire to the interviewee. At the end of the interview, it is often apparent to both of us whether training is the best solution to the request or not.
In cases where training is the need, then we go in-depth as to what the training content should be, the cost of the training, who should be attending, how much time should be allotted to the training, and how to measure the training effectiveness.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My Opportunity Has Come

I have heard about blogging all along and never pay any attention to what goes on in the world of bloggers. I perceived blogging as another time wasting social network. This course increased my awareness and opened my eyes to a wealth of knowledge about blogging.

I selected about blogs (weblogs). The author is Jay Cross of Jaycross.com. He defined a blog as a website with dated entries, usually by a single author, often accompanied by links to other blogs that the site’s editor visits on a regular basis. http://www.internettime.com/Learning/Weblogs.htm. According to him, blogging dated back to 1999, they are free, unfiltered and represented personal notions, informal and very conversational in nature. The site highlights the use of blogs for a variety of purposes. For example, blogging to learn, business blog, blog for education, and news blog. It appears that almost everything that exists today has a blog site.

I liked what he said about the bottom line. “Blog highlight useful information that I may never find on my own, or think to find on my own”. http://www.internettime.com/Learning/Weblogs.htm. This is a very meaningful statement to me as a beginner in the act of blogging. He referred readers to multiple useful sites about his learning experience that I need to revisit. 

The site discussed the following as advantages of blogging:
a.      The accessibility than face to face
b.     They scale very easily across large networks, thus reaching a wider audience
c.     They can easily archived and retrieved any number of time
d.      Providing context is much easier with hyperlinks and cross references.

 I became overwhelmed by the numerous articles, blogs, and information coupled with time that I need to sift through the information, knowing that I can sort through what I like to read. It is time consuming, but I will get use to it someway. 

I visited another site titled, eLearning Delivery Methods.
This site described eLearning as a framework that invites the use of whatever method best fits the situation at hand.  Here, the author analyzed eLearning delivery method of training in a tabulated format. In addition, the pro and cons of learning methods of learning were discussed. The tabulated information compares the benefit of each method and the challenges associated with them. Retrieved from http://www.internettime.com/itimegroup/methods.htm

What stood out for me was the real time discussion and chat room which requires the presence of all the parties at the same time. If you miss it, it is gone.   It gave me a flash back to what happened when I was shopping for my masters level program online. The requirement of such method is a constraint to me.

The third site is learning with Blogs and Wikis. http://web.ebscohost.com.ezp.waldenlibrary.org.(to access please log in to Walden website)  The author Ferriter Bill. The site highlight use of RSS feed to sort blog content this is very usefulness to me. The author discussed the current challenges in the school system as it impacts learners, and teachers.  The site offered some solutions to the current, challenging problems in the educational setting. The site broke the information down to easy to follow processes, and I have to continue to re-visit the information site to acclimate myself to more blogs.