When I first looked over my courses for this semester I was excited to see this class on the list. As a trained teacher and an acting corporate training, learning about learning theories is something that has always fascinated me in my role. I am pleased to say that this course has not let me down. As a future instructional designer it is essential that we have a strong understanding of how the learning mind works and operates. This information will prove to be the foundation for all of our projects that we create in the future. This course started with the basic concepts: behaviorism, cognitivism, etc that I had learned in undergrad, but took them to a deeper level where we were able to apply them. The exciting part for me was to learn about the more current models of learning that incorporated technology and the future state of learning.
I come away from this course with a solid footing in the idea of connectivism. It resonates with me because I believe that it is a perfect blend of technology and modern learning. According to Davis, Edmunds and Kelly-Bateman, learning occurs when a student participates in a social network of many different connections that are made possible through the use of technology (2008). This union of technology and learning is going to enable instructional designers to reach the modern student. Facebook, Wiki’s, Blogs, and other sites are what the future holds for learning and training and I think it’s an exciting venture.
Although I have a strong bond with connectivism I think it is important for all the students of this class to come away with the mentality that there is never one theory or model that will reach everyone. Just as students are different, learning theories are different and it isn’t a one size fits all type of relationship. For us, it is vital for designers to incorporate a blending of ideas, thoughts, models, theories, and concepts to our work. It will be with this appreciation for all the theories and the application that we will be able to better serve the learner. I think that this challenge is one that all of us are excited to tackle.
Davis, C., Edmunds, E., & Kelly-Bateman, V. (2008). Connectivism. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved 11/30/2010, from http://projects.coe.uga.edu/epltt/index.php?title=Connectivism