Fitting the Pieces Together

Now that you have a deeper understanding of the different learning theories and learning styles, how has your view on how you learn changed?
My view on the different learning theories has changed and grown tremendously because previous to this class I was not fully aware of the different learning theories and some of the views of the theories I had heard of before were not entirely correct. I had and sometimes still have a hard time distinguishing between key differences without referring back to notes, but I would say that constructivism and connectivism are the hardest to fully comprehend due to the detail of which they encompass. It has though been a joy in studying the different theories and trying to apply them to which situations to employ them in the instructional design models I am using at work.

Learning styles is the area I have truly begun to respect and apply to building courseware. Understanding the different styles and reasons learners learn the way they do is key in specific courses. Understanding that you cannot meet every learning styles of every student, but ISD’s can rather focus on the how the material is being presented with respect to the environment and type of material being taught. For example, the ISD’er can tailor instructional methods to meet the topic being discussed… in an engineering class, the educator can provide the class with a demonstration method when teaching versus just discussing what needs to be done by lecture.

What have you learned about the various learning theories and learning styles over the past weeks that can further explain your own personal learning preferences?
I can fully understand now why my younger years were filled with behavioral learning environments. As a young learner I was thrilled with being able to respond to what I was learning and too observe how well I was doing was key. Adult learning is the key to my growth intellectually. Over the past 10-15 years I have fully immersed myself in my hobbies and subjects I desire to learn about. After spending a long time in the military, I truly understood who I was and what I enjoyed and the learning took off from there.

I have to admit when I did the mind mapping exercise, I was not fully aware of how widespread my networks were. After receiving my grade for the assignment, I went back and took another look at truly how widespread and deep my networks were. I never truly realized how much the internet has taken a toll on how much and where I learn from. I really considered personal networks to be the key, but I think it is more like 70/30 internet to personal relationships.

What role does technology play in your learning (i.e., as a way to search for information, to record information, to create, etc.)?
As I admitted in the last question, technology has really played a part in my learning and networking. I never really captured how deep, clicking and submersing myself webpage after webpage can be. The internet provides many avenues to learn and research, but not only that the internet is obviously full of face to face networking capabilities. I have now joined two groups that meet bi-weekly for sharing tips, trades, and know-how’s for building online courseware.
The biggest tool I have used is just reaching out to software companies like Adobe and getting access to their free tutorials and monthly subscriptions to learn and see what advantages these software companies provide. Gaining small amounts of information on each software capability has allowed me to make intelligent decisions on what avenues to use when building courseware.


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