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THEORIZING DIGITAL
LEARNING
Matt Bernacki, Ph.D
Michael Wilder, M.Ed
Kendall Hartley, Ph.D
Panel 2.4 – Theorizing Digital ...
Using Learning Theory to Design Online Courses that maximize
Student Learning
• Matthew L. Bernacki
• Michael Wilder
Asses...
USING LEARNING THEORY
TO DESIGN ONLINE COURSES
THAT MAXIMIZE STUDENT LEARNING
Matt Bernacki, Ph.D
Michael Wilder, M.Ed
Learning Principles
How it Applies
Technology
People learn best when they
1. Organize their learning and make a plan.
2. Set goals.
3. Practice skills and rehearse know...
Organize your learning and make a plan.
Research shows that, when people are given an advanced
organizer that introduces t...
Set goals.
People learn best when they consider the overall objective of a
learning task, and then set small, achievable s...
Practice your skills and rehearse your knowledge.
 People improve their performance by repeatedly engaging with learning
...
Self-assess your learning, then consider your
approach.
Research on formative assessment5 and self-regulated learning6
sho...
Get feedback about your learning.
 Research shows that people learn better when they are told
they will receive feedback ...
Learning Principle Applied in an online course
1 Organize your learning
and make a plan.
• Embed the syllabus
• Structure ...
Self-Regulation External Regulation
& User Experience
• Optimize the instruction
• Michael Wilder
• Leverage cognitive loa...
DESIGN STANDARDS:
QUALITY MATTERS
Michael Wilder
Course Overview and Introduction
The overall design of the course is made clear to the student at the
beginning of the cou...
Research and Theory (30+ resources)
Anderson, T., Rourke, L., Garrison, D.R., & Archer, W.
(2001)
Aycock, A., Garnman, C.,...
Learning Objectives (Competencies)
Learning objectives are measurable and are clearly stated.
2.1 The course learning obje...
Assessment and Measurement
Assessment strategies are designed to evaluate student progress by
reference to stated learning...
Instructional Materials
Instructional materials are sufficiently comprehensive to achieve stated
course objectives and lea...
Learner Interaction and Engagement
Forms of interaction incorporated in the course motivate students and
promote learning....
Course Technology
Course navigation and technology support student engagement and
ensure access to course components.
6.1 ...
Learner Support
The course facilitates student access to institutional support services
essential to student success.
7.1 ...
Accessibility
The course demonstrates a commitment to accessibility for all
students.
8.1 The course employs accessible te...
Theorizing Digital Learning
Theorizing Digital Learning
Theorizing Digital Learning
Theorizing Digital Learning
Theorizing Digital Learning
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Theorizing Digital Learning

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Presentation delivered to the Nevada Conference on Digital Learning, April 12, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Theorizing Digital Learning

  1. 1. THEORIZING DIGITAL LEARNING Matt Bernacki, Ph.D Michael Wilder, M.Ed Kendall Hartley, Ph.D Panel 2.4 – Theorizing Digital Learning Session 2 | Saturday – April 12 | 10:30 – 11:45
  2. 2. Using Learning Theory to Design Online Courses that maximize Student Learning • Matthew L. Bernacki • Michael Wilder Assessing Rote Memory in Online Instruction: Baby and the Bathwater • William P. Jones • Allison Gorelick • Jennifer Guttman Panel & Audience Discussion around Session Theme Cognitive Load and Digital Learning: Fundamental Concepts and Design Implications • Kendall Hartley
  3. 3. USING LEARNING THEORY TO DESIGN ONLINE COURSES THAT MAXIMIZE STUDENT LEARNING Matt Bernacki, Ph.D Michael Wilder, M.Ed
  4. 4. Learning Principles
  5. 5. How it Applies
  6. 6. Technology
  7. 7. People learn best when they 1. Organize their learning and make a plan. 2. Set goals. 3. Practice skills and rehearse knowledge repeatedly. 4. Self-assess understanding, then adjust future attempts at learning. 5. Get feedback about your learning. • Other potential learning principles exist too • Help seeking • Collaboration
  8. 8. Organize your learning and make a plan. Research shows that, when people are given an advanced organizer that introduces them to a learning task (like a course), it improves their learning outcomes. Luiten, J., Ames, W., & Ackerson, G. (1980). A meta-analysis of the effects of advance organizers on learning and retention. American educational research journal, 17(2), 211-218.
  9. 9. Set goals. People learn best when they consider the overall objective of a learning task, and then set small, achievable subgoals to pursue. Locke, E. A., & Latham, G. P. (2002). Building a practically useful theory of goal setting and task motivation: A 35-year odyssey. American Psychologist, 57(9), 705.
  10. 10. Practice your skills and rehearse your knowledge.  People improve their performance by repeatedly engaging with learning materials.  The most effective way to engage with materials is not to reread material, but to practice retrieving and reconstructing the material. This has been dubbed the testing effect. Roediger, H. L., & Karpicke, J. D. (2006). Test-enhanced learning taking memory tests improves long-term retention. Psychological science, 17(3), 249-255. Do so repeatedly.  It is also helpful to space your practice. Practice repeatedly at first to improve your retention, and then to keep practicing at increasingly long intervals to maintain your retention.  This latter principle is called the spacing effect. Janiszewski, C., Noel, H., & Sawyer, A. G. (2003). A Meta‐analysis of the Spacing Effect in Verbal Learning: Implications for Research on Advertising Repetition and Consumer Memory. Journal of consumer research, 30(1), 138-149.
  11. 11. Self-assess your learning, then consider your approach. Research on formative assessment5 and self-regulated learning6 shows that monitoring the quality and progress of learning is critical.  Students who accurately monitor their learning can evaluate whether the strategies they are using are helping them achieve their goals.  If the strategies are working, they can continue using them. If not, selecting a new strategy that is appropriate for a learning goal is a good idea. Black, P., & Wiliam, D. (1998). Inside the black box: Raising standards through classroom assessment. Granada Learning.
  12. 12. Get feedback about your learning.  Research shows that people learn better when they are told they will receive feedback about their learning.  People use this feedback to correct their errors and tend to learn more strategically when they know feedback will be provided. Bangert-Drowns, R. L., Kulik, C. L. C., Kulik, J. A., & Morgan, M. (1991). The instructional effect of feedback in test-like events. Review of educational research, 61(2), 213-238.
  13. 13. Learning Principle Applied in an online course 1 Organize your learning and make a plan. • Embed the syllabus • Structure it to include an organization around major themes • Include learning objectives 2 Set goals. 3 Practice your skills and rehearse your knowledge. Do so repeatedly. • Provide materials to scaffold repeated practice and restudy. • Online quizzes for self assessment • Make notes (and lectures) available for repeated use • Assign/recommend repeated practice 4 Self-assess your learning, then consider your approach. Provide specific feedback in formative assessment tools • Correctness feedback • Model answers • Scaffold students’ self-assessment and recommend best ways to learn certain types of material 5 Get feedback about your learning.
  14. 14. Self-Regulation External Regulation & User Experience • Optimize the instruction • Michael Wilder • Leverage cognitive load • Kendall Hartley A self-regulated learner 1. Reflects on a learning task 2. Comes up with a learning plan 3. Enacts the plan (often using strategies) 4. Monitors whether learning is occurring repeats or adapts as necessary
  15. 15. DESIGN STANDARDS: QUALITY MATTERS Michael Wilder
  16. 16. Course Overview and Introduction The overall design of the course is made clear to the student at the beginning of the course. 1.1 Instructions make clear how to get started and where to find various course components. 1.2 Students are introduced to the purpose and structure of the course. 1.3 Etiquette expectations (sometimes called “netiquette”) for online discussions, email, and other forms of communication are stated clearly. 1.4 Course and/or institutional policies with which the student is expected to comply are clearly stated, or a link to current policies is provided. 1.5 Prerequisite knowledge in the discipline and/or any required competencies are clearly stated. 1.6 Minimum technical skills expected of the student are clearly stated. 1.7 The self-introduction by the instructor is appropriate and is available online. 1.8 Students are asked to introduce themselves to the class.
  17. 17. Research and Theory (30+ resources) Anderson, T., Rourke, L., Garrison, D.R., & Archer, W. (2001) Aycock, A., Garnman, C., & Kaleta, R. (2002) Borgemenke, A. J., Holt, W. C., & Fish, W. W. (2013) Conrad, D. (2002) Fair, B., & Wickersham, L. E. (2012) Fetzner, M. (2013) Gedik, N., Kiraz, E., & Ozden, M. Y. (2013) Gunawardena, C. & Zittle, F. (1997) Hall, A. (2010) Hannafin, M., Hill, J. R., Oliver, K., Glazer, E. & Sharma, P. (2003) Janicki and Liegle (2001) Jones, K.R. (2013) Marshall, J., Greenberg, H., & Machun, P. A. (2012) Moore, J.C. & Shelton, K. (2013) Motteram, G., & Gorrester, G. (2005) Muirhead, B. (2001) Ormel, B. J. B., Pareja Roblin, M. M., McKenney, S. F., Voogt, J. M., & Pieters, J. M. (2012) Pittenger, A., & Doering, A. (2010) Ragan, L.C., Bigatel, P.M., Kennan, S.S., Dillon, J.M. (2012) Rao, K. & Tanners, A. (2011) Rapanta, C., Maina, M., Lotz, N., & Bacchelli, A. (2013) Roblyer, M. D. &. Ekhaml, L. (2000, Spring) Seok, S., Kinsell, C., DaCosta, B., & Tung, C. K. (2010) Sheridan, K., & Kelly, M.A. (2010) Shiratuddin N., Hassan, S., Landoni, M. (2003) Sims, R., Dobbs, G., & Hand, T. (2002) Swan, K. (2001) Tamin, R. M., Lowerison, G., Schmid, R.F., Bernard, R. M., & Abrami, P. C. (2011) Welker, J. & Berardino, L. (2005) Williams, P. E. (2000) Wozniak, H.., Pizzica, J., & Mahony, M.J. (2012) Yen, C., & Tu, C. (2008) Youngblood, P., Trede, F., & DeCorpo, S. (2001)
  18. 18. Learning Objectives (Competencies) Learning objectives are measurable and are clearly stated. 2.1 The course learning objectives describe outcomes that are measurable. 2.2 The module/unit learning objectives describe outcomes that are measurable and consistent with the course-level objectives. 2.3 All learning objectives are stated clearly and written from the student’s perspective. 2.4 Instructions to students on how to meet the learning objectives are adequate and stated clearly. 2.5 The learning objectives are appropriately designed for the level of the course. Research and Theory (40+ resources)
  19. 19. Assessment and Measurement Assessment strategies are designed to evaluate student progress by reference to stated learning objectives; to measure the effectiveness of student learning; and to be integral to the learning process. 3.1 The types of assessments selected measure the stated learning objectives and are consistent with course activities and resources. 3.2 The course grading policy is stated clearly. 3.3 Specific and descriptive criteria are provided for the evaluation of students’ work and participation and are tied to the course grading policy. 3.4 The assessment instruments selected are sequenced, varied, and appropriate to the student work being assessed. 3.5 Students have multiple opportunities to measure their own learning progress. Research and Theory (50+ resources)
  20. 20. Instructional Materials Instructional materials are sufficiently comprehensive to achieve stated course objectives and learning outcomes. 4.1 The instructional materials contribute to the achievement of the stated course and module/unit learning objectives. 4.2 The purpose of instructional materials and how the materials are to be used for learning activities are clearly explained. 4.3 All resources and materials used in the course are appropriately cited. 4.4 The instructional materials are current. 4.5 The instructional materials present a variety of perspectives on the course content. 4.6 The distinction between required and optional materials is clearly explained. Research and Theory (40+ resources)
  21. 21. Learner Interaction and Engagement Forms of interaction incorporated in the course motivate students and promote learning. 5.1 The learning activities promote the achievement of the stated learning objectives. 5.2 Learning activities provide opportunities for interaction that support active learning. 5.3 The instructor’s plan for classroom response time and feedback on assignments is clearly stated. 5.4 The requirements for student interaction are clearly articulated. Research and Theory (230+ resources)
  22. 22. Course Technology Course navigation and technology support student engagement and ensure access to course components. 6.1 The tools and media support the course learning objectives. 6.2 Course tools and media support student engagement and guide the student to become an active learner. 6.3 Navigation throughout the online components of the course is logical, consistent, and efficient. 6.4 Students can readily access the technologies required in the course. 6.5 The course technologies are current. Research and Theory (70+ resources)
  23. 23. Learner Support The course facilitates student access to institutional support services essential to student success. 7.1 The course instructions articulate or link to a clear description of the technical support offered and how to access it. 7.2 Course instructions articulate or link to the institution’s accessibility policies and services. 7.3 Course instructions articulate or link to an explanation of how the institution’s academic support services and resources can help students succeed in the course and how students can access the services. 7.4 Course instructions articulate or link to an explanation of how the institution’s student support services can help students succeed and how students can access the services. Research and Theory (20+ resources)
  24. 24. Accessibility The course demonstrates a commitment to accessibility for all students. 8.1 The course employs accessible technologies and provides guidance on how to obtain accommodation. 8.2 The course contains equivalent alternatives to auditory and visual content. 8.3 The course design facilitates readability and minimizes distractions. 8.4 The course design accommodates the use of assistive technologies. Research and Theory (40+ resources)

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