Tuesday, January 17, 2012

When the brain is prepared to learn: Enhancing human learning using real-time fMRI

Review of a Journal Article by Julie Yoo et al.

Yoo et al. discuss how the brain varies in its ability to learn depending on its environment. Neuroimaging was used to detect favorable and unfavorable conditions for the brain to learn. The images helped to depict when a learner was pre-pared to learn or not prepared to learn.

Research results indicated that memory recognition was subsequently better when favorable learning conditions were presented or "good" brain states were measured. As Yoo et al. mentioned, gaining an understanding of favorable learning conditions will help us accelerate education and training.

As instructional designers it is important to pay attention to new research that is available that can help us expand our knowledge on how others learn. By continuing to educate our self, we directly impact our learners by providing them with the best tools possible for their educational growth.

This is a topic that I find very interesting, primarily any research that discusses new and innovative ways to accelerate learning.

Retrieved at: Journal Neuroimaging, (ScienceDirect database) Pull up the article by paging through Volume 59.

An Information Processing Theory of Learning and Forgetting

Review of a Journal Article by Andre, Thomas (An Information Processing Theory of Learning and Forgetting)

Its a very interesting article that talks about how information is processed and how sometimes it can be lost or not retrieved. Andre talks about how the IP model views learning as a process of storing, retrieving, and out putting information from a permanent memory.

What was new to me was his discussion on how the pattern of information determines how the information will be processed. He considers the pattern a type of stimulus and takes into account the response that is required to that stimulus at the moment of learning. I would equate this to the learning environment.

Andre continues to discuss how the pattern is most important when influencing the storage location in long term memory. As far as storage location is concerned , this concept is new to me but makes sense how the same type of information can be stored in different locations based on what kind of pattern is influencing the new information.

Andre suggests that multiple storage locations may account for forgetting; coupled with a limited amount of time to search the storage address system in turn resulting in a failure to retrieve information.

The IP theory can account for output interference (inability to output recalled information): if the initial stimulus and elaborative information (which determine the address of the stored information) cannot be reconstructed, the information will not be retrieved. -Andre Thomas

I would like to learn more about reconstruction of the information that Andre mentions.

The full article can be retrieved at:  http://www.eric.ed.gov/contentdelivery/servlet/ERICServlet?accno=ED063075 

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Overview of My Blog Sites 1.0

1. Rasmussen College Online Learning Blog: http://www.rasmussen.edu/student-life/blogs/online-learning/
- These blogs are created primarily for undergraduate students as that is who Rasmussen College primarily serves.
- The information is always up to date and comes from a Regional Accredited Educational Institution
- The blogs are short and quick reads and will help supplement Instructional Designers throughout their career because the information pertains directly to online learners.
- EASE OF USE: 9.0/10.0

2. eLearningLearning Blog: http://www.elearninglearning.com/
-Is a buffet of information and blogs related to eLearning. It contains information for almost every eLearning Professional, topics and concepts include but are not limited to learning, blogging, development, informal, and training.
-There is always recent information on the site but also has content from 2002 that is easily accessible. What's unique about this site is that it has discussion topics for date ranges up to 2020 (Classrooms in 2020) etc.
-This site will act as an ongoing resource for Instructional Designers because it's broad topic ranges and futuristic approach.
-EASE OF USE: 7.0/10.0

3. Cathy Moore (Let's save the world from boring elearning) http://blog.cathy-moore.com/
-Think of this as your local neighborhood gem (restaurant, park, museum) it does not seem to be a large scale blog and has a moderate amount of followers compared to eLearningLearning (above).
-Cathy provides links to entertaining and pertinent topics and responds to most of her commentators.
-This site will act an ongoing resource for an Instructional Designer simply for the fact that you may be able to connect with blogger much easier than a main stream source.

Rasmussen College Online Learning Blog

I currently work at Rasmussen College, here is the url to our our: Online Learning Blog http://www.rasmussen.edu/student-life/blogs/online-learning/

The blogs are quick short reads which is what our students wanted based on the feed back we gathered from them. Enjoy!

 My Top 3:
1. http://www.rasmussen.edu/student-life/blogs/online-learning/tip-online-college-students/

2. http://www.rasmussen.edu/student-life/blogs/online-learning/molding-your-career-in-digital-classroom/

3. http://www.rasmussen.edu/student-life/blogs/online-learning/what-to-expect-from-online-courses/

eLearningLearning "A buffet of information"

I ran into this website:  http://www.elearninglearning.com/instructional-design/ because of this article title  “I’m not an idiot!” – A Letter from an Agonized Adult Learner]

This article is so true "If Instructional Designers Ran the World": http://www.elearninglearning.com/instructional-design/

Cathy Moore "Let's save the world from boring elearning"

Here is her url if you would like to follow her: http://blog.cathy-moore.com/, she has good points and uses light humor to keep you interested. I figure she doesn't want to be a violator of her own "Mission statement: "Let's save the world from boring elearning"

Some information that I found interesting from Cathy's: "Are learners idots blog"

Learners know nothing. Our job is to insert knowledge into their brains without considering any knowledge that might already be there.
Learners can’t be trusted. They can’t be allowed to skip what they already know, and they must be told explicitly what’s right and wrong because they can’t draw conclusions from experience or stories.
These assumptions deny the adulthood of our learners. When these assumptions shape instruction, we create boring materials that sound like a patronizing parent.
Let learners place out. Start with simulations or scenarios that require learners to make the kinds of decisions they need to make in real life. If a learner proves that they can consistently make the right decisions, let them go.
Show, don’t tell. When a learner makes a poor decision, use the feedback to show them the results of their decision so they can conclude on their own that what they did was sub-optimal. Then, if necessary, show them what they need to know — or, better, put them in an easier scenario with more help and ratchet up the difficulty more slowly.