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Science of educational psychology

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Science of educational psychology

  1. 1. SCIENCE OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY What Is Educational Psychology? Educational psychology involves the study of how people learn, including topics such as student outcomes, the instructional process, individual differences in learning, gifted learners and learning disabilities. This branch of psychology involves not just the learning process of early childhood and adolescence, but includes the social, emotional and cognitive processes that are involved in learning throughout the entire lifespan. The field of educational psychology incorporates a number of other disciplines, including developmental
  2. 2. • GOALS OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY  Exploring the Field of Educational Psychology William James (1842–1910) - argued that laboratory psychology experiments often can’t tell us how to effectively teach children and emphasized the importance of observing teaching and learning in classrooms for improving education - recommended was to start lessons at a point just beyond the child’s level of knowledge and understanding, in order to stretch the child’s mind.
  3. 3. • GOALS OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY  Exploring the Field of Educational Psychology John Dewey (1859–1952) - presented the idea that education should focus on the whole child and emphasize the child’s adaptation to the environment - believed that children should not be narrowly educated in academic topics but should learn how to think and adapt to a world outside school. - thought that children should learn how to be reflective problem solvers that all children deserve to have a competent education
  4. 4. • GOALS OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY  Exploring the Field of Educational Psychology E. L. Thorndike (1874–1949) - argued that one of schooling’s most important tasks is to hone children’s reasoning skills, and he excelled at doing challenging scientific studies of teaching and learning - promoted the idea that educational psychology must have a scientific base and that it should focus strongly on measurement.
  5. 5. • GOALS OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY  Effective Teaching Teaching Involves Social and Ethical Matters - schools are settings in which considerable socialization takes place. The social and ethical dimensions of teaching include the question of educational equity Teaching Involves a Diverse Mosaic of Students- students differ in many ways. They will have different levels of intellectual ability, different personality profiles, different interests, varying motivations to learn, and different family, economic, religious, and cultural backgrounds
  6. 6. • GOALS OF EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY  Effective Teaching Effective Teachers - Professional Knowledge and Skills - Subject-Matter Competence - Commitment - Professional Growth
  7. 7. • RESEARCH IN EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY Interviews and Questionnaires (Descriptive) Correlational Research Experimental Research
  8. 8. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 1: Informing the Student Most students want to do well and achieve the goals set for them. - Well-chosen learning objectives will assure the student acquires all of the knowledge and skills to achieve the desired outcomes. They provide a road map for students and foster confidence that the teacher is there to assist them in achieving success. All course materials and activities should relate directly to the goals and learning objectives.
  9. 9. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 1: Informing the Student Students should be informed about the learning experience in order to understand the desired outcomes. - The concrete learning objectives for each section should be clearly defined, even read and reviewed aloud one at a time. After each learning objective is read, the students should be queried to assure they understand the objective and what will be expected of them.
  10. 10. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 2: Preparing the Student Assessment of Student Background Knowledge — An assessment of background knowledge provides important information. It allows the Preceptor to fill in any gaps in the student's assumed foundation knowledge, correct misinformation, and reinforce concepts that will underpin new materials to be presented. Care should be taken during this portion of the learning experience to correct any wrong information possessed by the students.
  11. 11. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 2: Preparing the Student Building Bridges — Information collected during pre-program assessments should be organized and formalized in a way that will support the transition to each new concept to be presented. Providing the students with logical bridges from their existing knowledge base to the new concepts will greatly increase their interest and ability to organize and retain new information they encounter. A brief preview discussion of the film is recommended to increase anticipation and expectations of the viewer.
  12. 12. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 3: Presenting Information Primacy— The educational principle of primacy is based upon the fact that what is learned the first time is usually what is retained. This has several consequences that must be taken into account when educating adult learners. Participants may have to unlearn incorrect information or techniques acquired during previous experiences that they regard as accurate. This is usually more difficult than learning new information and requires thoughtful, planned teaching techniques. Extreme care must be taken to avoid imparting incorrect information.
  13. 13. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 3: Presenting Information Intensity— learned must be intense enough to be retained. This may be accomplished in a number of ways:  learning supports must be established and reinforced consistently.  concepts or ideas contained in written material should be emphasized by use of color, highlighting, underlining, or italicizing.  use of humor, irony, or incongruity is beneficial in creating dynamic and memorable concepts which may easily be inserted into the adult’s long- term memory.  use of illustrations, brief stories, and most especially artifacts (i.e. tools- of-the-trade) is especially valuable in enhancing the intensity of most subject matter. • Written materials, films, and all other instructional aides used by the preceptor should be evaluated for their ability to add intensity to the subject matter.  develop reasonable styles of conversation and analysis, which maximize intensity in the presentation of otherwise dull materials and concepts.
  14. 14. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 3: Presenting Information Repetition— Knowledge is transferred from short- to long-term memory when it is repeated. This signals the brain that the information is important and should be retained. However, care must be taken to make these repetitions informational and prevent boredom. The key concepts are presented at least twice in the course materials; once audio-visually and once in the written form. The instructor should then incorporate a method of presenting each concept in a hands-on way, such as through group discussion of practical application or guided practice of skills. In developing course materials, key concepts can also be repeated by mentioning their application in various settings as frequently as is appropriate.
  15. 15. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 4: Implanting the Knowledge and Transfer of Learning Transfer from Short-Term to Long-Term Memory— Most information resides in the short-term memory for a few minutes and then vanishes unless strategies are employed to transfer it to the long-term memory. Repetition is one way to accomplish this as is presenting information in several, overlapping, and different ways (visually, verbally, written). Another excellent way to implant new information in the long- term memory is to immediately apply it to problem solving through play acting.
  16. 16. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 4: Implanting the Knowledge and Transfer of Learning Transfer of Learning to Daily Practice— Even when information is retained in the long-term memory, it will not necessarily be incorporated into actual practice without a transformation strategy. The process of transforming knowledge to actions is called transfer of learning. In most cases, this does not happen all by itself, and the job of the preceptor does not end until this concrete outcome has occurred. It is important to prepare for the transfer of learning while information is fresh and the student’s interest is high.
  17. 17. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 5: Closing the Loop; Assessment and Correction of Deficiencies Formal Assessments— A written test of factual knowledge helps the preceptor and student identify concepts that were poorly understood or ineffectively transferred to the long-term memory. An observed practical skills test measures the transfer of knowledge to practical applications. The students should be skilled and practiced in the process that will be observed and the criteria by which their performance will be assessed.
  18. 18. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 5: Closing the Loop; Assessment and Correction of Deficiencies Retraining— Retraining should be based upon an assessment of the written and practical skills test. The instructor must first identify the key concepts that relate to the missed questions or inadequate skills. Elicit the student’s engagement in this process and ask the student what aides, practice, or other information he or she feels would be beneficial. Sometimes, it is useful to have the student try to teach the information. (The process of teaching is often the best way to learn a subject.)
  19. 19. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 5: Closing the Loop; Assessment and Correction of Deficiencies Assessment of Retraining— The written test following the retraining process should emphasize the subject area of difficulty. If the problems were skills-based, several repetitions of the problematic processes should be performed to assure consistency.
  20. 20. • ATTAINING DESIRED OUTCOMES OF ADULT LEARNING  Phase 5: Closing the Loop; Assessment and Correction of Deficiencies Ongoing Assessment and Reinforcement— The ongoing assessment and reinforcement of learned skills is the most important component in achieving desired concrete outcomes. The ongoing assessment should use the same criteria as the formal post- test of practical skills. Corrective observations should be presented in a supportive, rather than a critical, format. Personnel working together within the group should be encouraged to provide each other with positive reinforcement.
  21. 21. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Work with learning as a by-product Participation in group processes - covers both team- working towards a common outcome, and groups set up for a special purpose such as discussing a client, problem solving, reviewing some practices, planning ahead, or responding to external changes.
  22. 22. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Work with learning as a by-product Working alongside others - others allows people to observe and listen to others at work and to participate in activities; and hence to learn some new practices and new perspectives, to become aware of different kinds of knowledge and expertise, and to gain some sense of other people’s tacit knowledge. This mode of learning, which includes a lot of observation as well as discussion, is extremely important for learning the tacit knowledge that underpins routines and intuitive decisions and is difficult to explain. When people see what is being said and done, explanations can be much shorter and the fine detail of incidents is still in people’s minds. Clues to situational recognition may not be remembered, unless they are picked up on-the-spot by questions or comments. Moreover, multi- sensory engagement over some time enables the gradual development of tacit as well as explicit situational understanding.
  23. 23. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Work with learning as a by-product Consultations within or outside the working group or even outside the organisation, are used to co-ordinate activities or to get advice. The act of initiating a consultation, however, depends on the relationships between the parties, the extent of a worker’s network and the culture of the workplace. For newcomers the distinction between a consultation and being mentored or supervised is not always clear, as part of a mentor’s or supervisor’s role is making oneself available for consultation.
  24. 24. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Work with learning as a by-product Tackling challenging tasks and roles - requires on-the job learning and, if successful, leads to increased motivation and confidence. However, people are less inclined to take on challenges unless they feel confident both in their ability to succeed as a result of previous experience and in the support of their manager and/or colleagues. Without such previous experience and support, challenges pose too high a risk.
  25. 25. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Work with learning as a by-product Problem solving, individually or in groups, necessarily entails learning; otherwise there would be no problem. Such problems are not just technical, they may involve acquiring new knowledge before one can start, searching for relevant information and informants, imagination, persistence and interpersonal negotiation. Trying things out is distinguished from less purposeful behaviour by the intention to learn from the experience. It requires some prior assessment of risk, especially where other people might be affected, and may require special arrangements for getting feedback, as well as time for subsequent reflection and evaluation.
  26. 26. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Work with learning as a by-product Consolidating, extending and refining skills are particularly important when entering new jobs or taking on new roles, when it is sometimes supported by episodes of supervision, coaching or feedback. It is greatly helped by informal personal support and some sense of an onward learning trajectory. Working with clients also entails learning (1) about the client, (2) from any novel aspects of each client’s problem or request and (3) from any new ideas that arise from the encounter. Some workers have daily experiences of working with clients, which may or may not be recognized as learning opportunities. Some progress from less to 14 more important clients, or from those with simple needs to those with more complex needs. There can also be a strong emotional dimension, when a client arrives in a distressed state or is about to receive bad news. This is a context where sharing experiences can be helpful. Another factor is the extent to which client contact gives the work meaning and value, and thus enhances workers’ sense of collective purpose.
  27. 27. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning Activities located within work or learning processes Asking questions and getting information are important, proactive activities; and good questions and knowledge searches are appreciated in positive learning contexts. However, many novices feel diffident about asking 15 questions of senior colleagues unless they are working together and the question is spontaneous. They feel that asking a “silly” question would reflect badly on their reputation and are afraid of being prematurely labelled as a “weak” practitioner. This constraint, however, does not apply to talking to peers or novices a year or less ahead of them who still remember what it was like at their stage; and this should be considered when allocating and supporting newcomers.
  28. 28. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning Activities located within work or learning processes Locating resource people is also a proactive activity that requires confidence and social understanding. Some early career professionals were very proactive in seeking out and developing relationships with a wider network of knowledge resource people, while others gave it little attention, often because they did not appreciate its potential value. Resource people may be gatekeepers and/or guides to who knows what and who is prepared to support newcomers. Progression routes to more ambitious tasks may depend on whom you get to know; and willingness to engage in routine work may earn you the right to get access to more challenging work.
  29. 29. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning Activities located within work or learning processes Listening and observing activities are very dependent on what the observer/listener is able to grasp and comprehend; and comprehension depends on awareness of the significance of what has been said and/or done. Such awareness and understanding is developed through discussion and reflection. Much is learned through watching other people communicating with colleagues, clients or subordinates. However, it should be noted that our research encountered as much learning from bad examples as from good examples! Sometimes the best role models are among the support staff.
  30. 30. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning Activities located within work or learning processes Learning from mistakes is possible in most working contexts, both from one’s own mistakes and those of others; but opportunities for this activity are frequently missed. Another important issue concerns when it is better to be taught the right way and when it is better to allow people to learn from their mistakes. Reflection is included here, because it occurs both on and off the job and often plays an important role in recognizing and learning from mistakes. Authors such as Schon (1983, 1987) have argued that reflection lies at the centre of nearly all significant learning, but have not fully explored the range of reflective learning agents (individual or group), foci (current, past or future), contexts (busy or relaxed) and purposes (monitoring, decision making or learning) and their influence on the reflective process.
  31. 31. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning Activities located within work or learning processes Giving and receiving feedback are both important, often vital, for most learning processes. We found four main settings for feedback: Immediate comment on aspects of a task or role given on-the-spot or soon after the event by a co-participant or witness. Informal conversations away from the job often convey indirect and/or unintended messages as well as intended advice; but don’t pay attention to second hand feedback out of context, because these second hand messages often misinterpret what was said. Formal roles such as mentor or supervisor involve some responsibility for a l earner’s short to medium term progress and an obligation to provide formative feedback on a regular basis; but this may not happen in practice. Appraisal is a process where designated appraisers are expected, but rarely succeed in, giving normative feedback on personal strengths and weaknesses and ascertaining views on learning opportunities and meeting expectations .
  32. 32. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning Activities located within work or learning processes Mediating artefacts need more explanation in spite of their considerable value, so we provide some examples from our recent research into the learning of early career, accountants, engineers and nurses. They play a very important role in structuring work and sharing information by mediating group learning about clients or projects in progress. Some artefacts in daily use carry information in a standard way that novices soon learn to understand.
  33. 33. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning processes at or near the workplace Coaching and mentoring are provided mainly for newcomers, and occasionally for newly appointed managers and training in new technology. Coaching is often limited by managers not being prepared to release potential coaches from their normal work, and mentoring by lack of informal opportunities to develop an appropriate relationship. In many situations mentoring is provided by helpful others, who are not designated mentors, and this is usually best for mutual on-the-spot support and feedback. Shadowing and visits to other sites are used for inducting some newcomers, for workers taking on new responsibilities and for improving cooperation between different sites. They could be very helpful for developing a wider understanding of projects, other work groups, suppliers and customers; but this need is often underestimated.
  34. 34. • HOW DO PROFESSIONALS LEARN?  Learning processes at or near the workplace Conferences are probably more important for updating and networking then for direct learning, and short courses were the main kind of formal Continuing Professional Development. Attending short training courses was important for some people at particular stages in their career. But even then, work-based learning was important in developing the ability to use what has been learned off-the-job. This was especially true for short courses, which have very little impact unless they are appropriately timed and properly followed up at work. Independent study may be supported by the provision of knowledge resources and/or agreed plans, such as lists of competences, learning projects or personal development plans. Formal training and knowledge resources such as manuals, reference books, documentation, protocols and an intranet were generally available to all workers, the engineers in particular using the intranet as their prime source of current information. Apart from essential textbooks, manuals and guides received limited use. Learners generally found it quicker and more effective to get information directly from more knowledgeable colleagues or the minority that did conquer the manuals.

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