Monday, March 9, 2009

Debate on Kozma and Clark

Learning occurs by the instructional method embedded in the presentation. It is the method of delivering instruction. What do we mean by method? Method is the inclusion of a number of possible ways of delivering information that is necessary for learning which students cannot provide for themselves. Method is the active ingredient. Method will allow us to use media to its fullest potential as long as we are implementing the correct methods. Some forms of instructional delivery get the active ingredient faster or slower than others. Method is the cognitive process or strategies that are necessary for learning. Media is just a “mere vehicle that delivers instruction but do not influence student achievement.” We should design something that requires the least expensive solution. Media can be used that may be cheaper and more efficient Clark believes that media is a tool used to transport knowledge. Any media can be used for the learning goal. It could be videos, software, and sound. The focus should be on the way the information is presented. Humans possess representational systems: visual, verbal, kinesthetic, regardless of materials presented by book or computer. The learning process includes active cognitive processing, including, selecting, organizing, and integrating mental representations, this promotes meaningful learning. So the methods used to transmit knowledge and promote learning must be based on human cognitive processes in order to be effective. Clark states new media wears off over time and exposure again lessens the effects. This method will have different learning efficiencies for different learners. What exactly is learning? 1. Cognitive Learning: The acquisition of knowledge and skill by mental or cognitive processes. 2. Cognitive Processes: This includes creating mental representations of physicals objects and events. Educators have been trying to improve schools with every technology we have invented, beginning with Edison. We should focus on skills like writing and reasoning, and reliable work habits. Research has shown that students need to be motivated in order for learning to occur. Technology is neat. But it does not teach students to read, write, problem-solve or think critically. Our parents and grandparents all attended schools that have had little or no technology. They had all learned the basics just fine with textbooks and blackboards; the crisis in education has to do with how it is valued in society and families. And no amount of money or technology will solve that problem. For students, who value their own education, technology is a nice addition to the classroom and the curriculum. But for those that do not, technology is only a distraction. “Many different media attributes could accomplish the same learning goal.” Clark, R. (1994) Media Will Never Influence Learning. ETR&D, 21-29.