Tag Archives: technology

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Impact of Technology and Multimedia

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What impact does technology and multimedia have on online learning environments?

Technology plays a critical role in online learning environments because they allow learners to collaborate and work in groups to create knowledge and use a constructivism learning approach to build their knowledge. For example, technology tools such as wikis and blogs are user generated content tools that allow learners to collaborate, create content, and post comments (Laureate Education, 2010).

Multimedia enhances the learning experience y allowing learners access content in a more dynamic way with videos, audio files, simulations, games, and other interactive tools. Dr. Mayer (2007) documented several principles of multimedia learning after doing an extensive research on the benefits multimedia elements have to promote deep learning.

What are the most important considerations an online instructor should make before implementing technology?

Boettcher and Conrad (2010) indicated that “technology should serve pedagogy” (p. 63). This means that before considering the technology tools for the online learning environment, instructors have to go through a learning design process where the starting point is to identify the learning outcomes or goals that must be achieved. Once those learning outcomes are determined, then learning experiences are designed to ensure those goals will be achieved.

What implications do usability and accessibility of technology tools have for online teaching?

Betts, Riccobono, and Welsh (2013) mentioned “many individuals with disabilities enroll in online learning because it may provide easier access for them due to their disabilities” (p.4). Because of this, and also because one of the main purpose of online learning is inclusion of different types of learners, it is necessary that the technology tools of the learning environment to apply accessibility standards to accommodate students with disabilities.

What technology tools are most appealing to you for online teaching as you move forward in your career in instructional design?

The Web 2.0 technologies where learners create content and can comment in the work of their peers. Technologies that can incorporate tools such as Youtube, wikis, and blogs.

Also Articulate Storyline is a very powerful tool to create engaging online courses.

What is the significance of knowing the technology available to you?

Instructors in the online environment have to get the familiar with the technology that is going to be used during the online course because before the launching of the course they have to configure the learning environment with the content and the tools that learners will be using. Digital technology tools help learners achieve the learning goals in the online environment (Boettcher & Conrad, 2010) because they facilitate communication among students and with the instructor, and because they also allow instructors to include resources in different formats such as multimedia, games, and simulations; therefore the importance for instructors and learners to get familiar with the technology.

References

Betts, K., Riccobono, M. & Welsh, B. (2013). Introduction to the special section on integrating accessibility into online learning. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 17, 1-5.

Boettcher, J. V., & Conrad, R. (2010). The Online Teaching Survival Guide. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Laureate Education (Producer). (2010). Enhancing the online experience [Video file].

Mayer, R. E. (2007). Five features of effective multimedia messages: An evidence-based approach. In Fiore, S. M., & Salas, E. (Eds.). Toward a science of distributed learning (pp. 171–184). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

TechTools

Technology Tools for Online Learning

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Fitting the pieces together

Fitting the Pieces Together

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When I started researching about learning theories, I noticed that constructivism was the learning theory that was more aligned to the learning approach that I consider more effective, due to the fact that in constructivism the learning process is an active construction of knowledge where the learner is building the knowledge and the instructor has the role of supporting the process by creating an environment in which that construction takes place (Brandon, 2004).

I still support that initial idea. However, after studying different learning theories I think it is important to incorporate in my learning experiences strategies and ideas from other theories such as social learning theory.

In social learning theory an individual acquires knowledge through engagement in social activities. Knowledge acquisition is not a stand-alone entity, but is constructed over time through social engagement and ongoing discourses within cultural contexts and value systems (Nguyen, 2013). Based on that, I can now see the real value of social interactions in my own learning process. I experience a more effective learning when I am in instructional settings where I can discuss with peers about a subject and when I can relate or simply understand the different points of views around the topic of study. According to Dr. Ormrod (n.d.), in social learning environments, an individual learns from other people and internalizes the arguing process product of that social interaction.

Social learning environments encourage me to participate more in discussion forums, I elaborate more knowledge because I engage in a more sophisticated way of thinking where I can see a particular problem or topic from different perspectives. Additionally, sharing experiences, real world examples, and ideas with others offer me more opportunities to reflect on the content of the course and to be part of a community of professionals with the same interests.

On the other hand, when it comes to learning styles, initially I thought visual and kinesthetic methodologies used in instructional experiences were the best fit for me. However, I now support more the idea that the learning process is complex and learners cannot be categorized into one specific learning style that could potentially limit the learning process and establish unnecessary boundaries for the learner. Instead, I believe that instructional designers and educators in general should consider different strategies when designing learning experiences to accommodate a diversity of methods. Therefore there will be a rich learning environment for learners, offering options to explore content in different ways while promoting engagement and motivation from learners towards the learning experience.

I now prefer for my own learning experience to build knowledge using different styles depending on the content. I now find more value in exploring the information using different methodologies such as reading resources, using audiovisuals, diagrams, interactive activities, real world practices, simulations, or even games.

As seen in my learning network map (previous post), technology plays an important role to support my own learning process. I use technology to access information such as library data bases, videos on Youtube, tutorials on Lynda.com, search engines, podcasts, blogs, online magazines, and TED Talks. I also use technology to create my own reflections on a topic like this blog, and to share ideas in professional communities using social media (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn).

Technology not only offers me tools to facilitate my own learning process but also provides mechanisms to create content in different ways, supporting a variety of methods and helping me create a rich and diverse learning environment.

References:

Brandon, B. (2004). How do people learn? Some new ideas for e-learning designers. Learning Solutions Magazine. Retrieved from http://www.learningsolutionsmag.com/articles/301/how-do-people-learn-some-new-ideas-for-e-learning-designers

Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.). Theory of Social Cognitive Development [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu

Nguyen, T. (2013). Understanding different learning theories for technology integration. Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Media and Technology 2013. Retrieved from www.editlib.org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/p/112123

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