Emerging Perspectives in Learning and Instruction Instructional Psychology & Technology 692R (Section 001) Spring Term 2006 Instructor: Stephen Yanchar, Ph.D. Office: 150-H MCKB Phone: 422-2608 e-mail: [email protected] Office Hours: by appointment Class Time: MWF 12-1:50 Room: 150-B MCKB Course Overview and Purposes: The purpose of this seminar to help you become familiar with theoretical perspectives on learning and instruction that are not widely visible in psychology and instructional technology or that have gained some measure of prominence only in the last several decades. In other words, you will study theories of learning and instruction that have been developed independent of, or as responses to, historically prevailing theories of learning such as behaviorism, cognitivism, and social learning theory. Through this process, your perspective should be broadened in a way that makes you more aware of the assumptions of traditional learning theories and more aware of alternative conceptions that can inform your thinking and work. Course Procedures: In this interactive seminar, we will read, critically examine, and discuss key writings by theorists who have developed these emerging perspectives. When possible, our seminar will also be visited by professors or other experts in the field who can bring fresh and helpful perspectives to our discussions. Class time will be devoted to the careful analysis of formative concepts and the open exchange of viewpoints in pursuit of a broader appreciation and a deeper understanding of the fundamental ideas that inform these emerging perspectives. Student Assessment: Grades will be based on the following course requirements: 1. Brief Reading Presentations: You are expected to lead our group discussion of a course reading at least twice during the term. In your presentation, you will: (a) provide an overview of the author’s thesis, supporting arguments, and assumptions; (b) demonstrate how the reading relates to other readings we have discussed during the term; and (c) facilitate a group discussion of the reading’s meaning, plausibility, and contribution to practice. 2. Critical Reflection Papers: Approximately four times during the term, you will be asked to write a 2-3 page critical reflection paper on a set of readings. Your task will be to examine and evaluate the arguments and assumptions presented in these readings. Note that I am not asking for summaries of the articles and chapters we discuss, but critical assessments of key ideas that underlie these emerging perspectives in well-thought-out, well-written, internally consistent, and defensible position papers. All references and quotes should be properly documented, all claims reasonably supported. Moreover, your critical assessments must be written from a theoretical or practical perspective of your own—behaviorist, cognitivist, constructivist, postmodernist, public school teaching or administration, instructional design, project management, etc. For example, you may wish to consider how some of the emerging perspectives we discuss inform your practice, lead to desirable outcomes, help solve theoretical or practical problems, or deal with theoretical issues such as human agency and moral responsibility. To help prepare you for these assignments, we will discuss this type of writing in class. In all likelihood, the first of these reflection papers will be assigned after the Brown, Collins & Duguid (1996) chapter, the second after the Lave and Wenger (1991) book, the third after the Putnam & Borko (2000) article, and the fourth after the Gruender (1996) article. 3. Final Exam: Your final exam will be another reflection paper, somewhat broader in scope than the first three. This fifth reflection paper could also be viewed as an early version of a scholarly work and turned into a thesis, dissertation, conference presentation, or publication. Although the development of this paper into a fully-completed, publishable (or presentable) work is not required, I expect it, like the other papers, to be a well-thought-out, well-written, internally consistent, and defensible examination of a substantive idea or viewpoint. I will provide more details about your final exam in class, as soon as possible. Tentative Course Schedule May June 3 5 8 10 12 15 17 19 22 24 26 31 2 5 7 9 12 14 16 19 23 Course Introduction, Overview of Perspectives, Preliminary Assignments Yanchar (2005) Greeno et al. (1998) McLellan (1996); Brown, Collins, & Duguid (1996) Reading day Lave & Wenger (1991, foreward, section 1) Lave & Wenger (1991, section 2) Reading day Lave & Wenger (1991, section 3) Lave & Wenger (1991, section 4) Reading day Anderson, et al. (1996); Greeno (1997); Anderson, et al. (1997) Reading day Kirshner & Whitson (1998); Cobb & Bowers (1999); Putnam & Borko (2000) Hay & Barab (2001) Reading Day Duffy & Cunningham (1996) Gruender (1996) Reading Day Brown (1992); Barab & Squire (2004) Tentative Final Exam Period Course Bibliography: Anderson, J. R., Reder, L. M., & Simon, H. A. (1996). Situated learning and education. Educational Researcher, 25(4), 5-11. Anderson, J. R., Reder, L. M., & Simon, H. A. (1997). Rejoinder: Situative versus cognitive perspectives: Form versus substance. Educational Researcher, 26(1), 18-21. Barab, S., & Squire, K. (2004). Design-based research: Putting a stake in the ground. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 13, 1-14. Brown, A. L. (1992). Design experiments: Theoretical and methodological challenges in creating complex interventions in classroom settings. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 2, 141-178. Brown, J. S., Collins, A., & Duguid, P. (1996). Situated cognition and the culture of learning. In H. McLellan (Ed.), Situated learning perspectives (pp. 19-44). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications. Cobb, P., & Bowers, J. (1999). Cognitive and situated learning perspectives in theory and practice. Educational Researcher, 28(2), 4-15. Duffy, T. M., & Cunningham, D. J. (1996). Constructivism: Implications for the design and delivery of instruction. In D. Jonassen (ed.), Handbook of research for educational communications and technology (pp. 170-198). New York: Simon & Schuster MacMillan. Greeno, J. G. (1997). Response: On claims that answer the wrong questions. Educational Researcher, 26 (1), 5-17. Greeno, J., & the Middle School Mathematics Through Applications Project Group (1998). The situativity of knowing, learning, and research. American Psychologist, 53, 526. Gruender, C. D. (1996). Constructivism and learning: A philosophical appraisal. Educational Technology, 36 (3), 21-29. Hay, K. E. & Barab, S. A. (2001). Constructivism in practice: A comparison and contrast of apprenticeship and constructionist learning environments. The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 10, 281-322. Kirshner, D., & Whitson, J. A. (1998). Obstacles to understanding cognition as situated. Educational Researcher, 27(8), 22-28. Lave, J., & Wenger, E. (1991). Situated learning: Legitimate peripheral participation. New York: Cambridge University Press. McLellan, H. (1996). Situated learning: Multiple perspectives. In H. McLellan (Ed.), Situated learning perspectives (pp. 5-17). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications. Putnam, R. T., & Borko, H. (2000). What do new views of knowledge and thinking have to say about research on teacher learning? Educational Researcher, 29(1), 4-15. Yanchar, S. C. (2005). A contextualist alternative to cognitive psychology. In B. D. Slife, J. S. Reber, & F. C. Richardson (Eds.), Critical thinking about psychology: Hidden assumptions and plausible alternatives (pp. 171-186). Washington DC: American Psychological Association Press.