Educational Theories

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Last updated: May 5, 2019
Adult Learning Theory
K.P. CrossLifelong Learning.Personal and situational characteristics. Capitalize on learning experiences.

Adapt to aging limitations.Choice in availability and organization of program  

M. Knowles. Adult Learners- self directed and responsibleFocus more on process and less on contentInstructor as facilitator vs. lecturer/graderInvolvement in planning and evaluationSubjects needs to have relevancyExperience provides basis for learning 
Experiential Learning Theory
C. RogersExperiential (meaningless) Cognitive (significant)Experiential learning addresses needs/wantsExperiential learning = personal change/growthRelevancy to personal interests New attitudes or perspectives are adapted when threats are lowSelf-initiated learning is lasting
Information Processing Theory

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A. Miller”chunking”, short term memory, 7+-2TOTE (test, operate, test, exit)general theory of human cognitionbehavior is hierarchially organized

Multiple Intelligences
H. Gardnerlinguistic, musical, logical-mathematical, spatial, body-kinesthetic, intrapersonal and interpersonalindividuals should develop their strongest intelligence and will learn best when using their intelligenceactivities should appeal to all intelligenceslearning assessments should measure all intelligences
Script Theory
R. SchankConceptualization can be analyzed in terms of small, primitive acts.All memory is episodic and organized into scripts.Scripts allow individuals to make inferences and understand verbal/written discourse.Higher level expectations are created by goals and plans.

Situated Learning
J. LaveSituated learning=knowledge acquisitionKnowledge needs to be presented in an authentic context. Learning requires social interaction and collaboration. 
Social Learning Theory

BanduraSocial Learning=learning through observation and modeling.Social learning spans both cognitive and behavioral.  Modeled behavior is more likely to result in outcomes if the behavior is one that is valued, modeled by someone the learner admires and can relate to and the behavior has a function 

Attribution Theory
B. WeinerAttribution is a three stage process: (1) behavior is observed, (2) behavior is determined to be deliberate, and (3) behavior is attributed to internal or external causes.Achievement can be attributed to (1) effort, (2) ability, (3) level of task difficulty, or (4) luck.

Causal dimensions of behavior are (1) locus of control, (2) stability, and (3) controllability.

Cognitive Dissonance Theory
L. FestingerDissonance occurs when an individual must choose between attitudes and behaviors that contradict. Dissonance can be eliminated by reducing the importance of the conflicting beliefs, acquiring new beliefs that change the balance, or removing the conflicting attitude or behavior.

Constructivist Theory

BrunerInstructor and student should engage in active dialog (socratic learning).Instructor should be concerned with the experiences and contexts that make the student willing and able to learn (readiness).Lessons must be structured so that they can be easily grasped by the student (spiral organization).Instruction should be designed to facilitate extrapolation and or fill in the gaps (going beyond the information given).

F.Marton  & N. EntwistleResearchers should seek an understanding of the phenomenon of learning by examining students’ experiences.Research about learning needs to be conducted in a naturalistic setting involving the actual content and settings people learn with.

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