Learning Technologies of Change

Learning Change Project

A Creative Thinking Approach to enhancing Problem Solving Performance of University Students

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Along with the advancement of information and communication technology, researchers have pointed out the necessity and challenges of developing effective instructional strategies to enhance students’ web-based problem-solving performance, which refers to the ability of investigating a series of related problems via searching for, abstracting and summarizing information on the web. In this study, a creative thinking strategy is proposed to cope with this problem. Moreover, an experiment was conducted on 80 freshmen from two classes of a university to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed approach. The experimental results show that the proposed approach improved the students’ web-based problem solving performance in comparison with the conventional approach in terms of “problem finding” and “idea finding.” Moreover, it was found that the proposed approach could improve the “fact finding” performance of the students with intuitive-type cognitive style. Accordingly, some implications and suggestions are given for educators who attempt to conduct web-based problem-solving activity.

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Written by learningchange

July 10, 2014 at 6:46 pm

Cultivating Critical Thinking Through E-learning Environment and Tools – A Review

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Critical thinking is one of the main goals of higher education to train dependant and reasonable thinker as an efficient citizenship in modern society. Researchers and instructors in the world attempt to assess the level of students’ critical thinking in order to foster it as a vital ability. Also, researchers use different learning approaches and theories along with the technological progress to nurture critical thinking of students. On the other hand, the advent of e-learning in education facilitates the difficulties through the learning and teaching paths. Researchers provided models and strategies for developing critical thinking by e-learning tools with their specific characteristic and applications. This paper presents a review on e-learning approaches and models which are used to cultivate critical thinking with the aim of highlighting the importance of critical thinking and the role of e-learning. We also present a taxonomy of existing e-learning models based on their applications and efficiencies as well as presenting similarities and differences in such approaches and discuss open research issues.

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Written by learningchange

July 9, 2014 at 7:22 pm

The Will to Technology and the Culture of Nihilism: Heidegger, Nietzsche and Marx

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In The Will to Technology and the Culture of Nihilism, Arthur Kroker explores the future of the 21st century in the language of technological destiny. Presenting Martin Heidegger, Karl Marx, and Friedrich Nietzsche as prophets of technological nihilism, Kroker argues that every aspect of contemporary culture, society, and politics is coded by the dynamic unfolding of the ‘will to technology.’

Moving between cultural history, our digital present, and the biotic future, Kroker theorizes on the relationship between human bodies and posthuman technology, and more specifically, wonders if the body of work offered by thinkers like Heidegger, Marx, and Nietzsche is a part of our past or a harbinger of our technological future. Heidegger, Marx, and Nietzsche intensify our understanding of the contemporary cultural climate. Heidegger’s vision posits an increasingly technical society before which we have become ‘objectless objects‘? driftworks in a ‘culture of boredom.’ In Marx, the disciplining of capital itself by the will to technology is a code of globalization, first announced as streamed capitalism. Nietzsche mediates between them, envisioning in the gathering shadows of technological society the emergent signs of a culture of nihilism. Like Marx, he insists on thinking of the question of technology in terms of its material signs.

In The Will to Technology and the Culture of Nihilism, Kroker consistently enacts an invigorating and innovative vision, bringing together critical theory, art, and politics to reveal the philosophic apparatus of technoculture.

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Written by learningchange

June 5, 2014 at 10:53 am

A Learning Secret: Don’t Take Notes with a Laptop

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New research by Pam Mueller and Daniel Oppenheimer demonstrates that students who write out their notes on paper actually learn more. Across three experiments, Mueller and Oppenheimer had students take notes in a classroom setting and then tested students on their memory for factual detail, their conceptual understanding of the material, and their ability to synthesize and generalize the information. Half of the students were instructed to take notes with a laptop, and the other half were instructed to write the notes out by hand. As in other studies, students who used laptops took more notes. In each study, however, those who wrote out their notes by hand had a stronger conceptual understanding and were more successful in applying and integrating the material than those who used took notes with their laptops.

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Written by learningchange

June 5, 2014 at 10:41 am

Posted in Computers, Students, Study

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Effects of Internet use on the Adolescent Brain

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Twenty-five years have passed since the invention of the World Wide Web changed society by allowing unfettered access to the Internet. How this technological revolution has affected brain development continues to be an open question. There is particular concern about how Internet use is affecting the brains of adolescents. This Forum article discusses the possible effects of the Internet, as well as the behaviors and capabilities associated with its use, on the adolescent brain.

In the 25 years since the World Wide Web was invented, our way of interacting with each other and our collective history has changed. Successfully navigating this new world is likely to require new skills, which will be reflected in our neural architecture on some level. However, there is currently no evidence to suggest that Internet use has or has not had a profound effect on brain development. Finally, even if Internet use is impacting the developing brain during adolescence, we must not forget that the brains of adults remain capable of functional change. Indeed, Internet-based training programs are being developed to capitalize on just that.

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Written by learningchange

June 3, 2014 at 9:11 pm

Posted in Adolescent, Brain, Internet

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A hybrid approach to promoting Students’ Web-based Problem-solving competence and Learning attitude

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Fostering problem-solving abilities has long been recognized as an important issue in education; however, past studies have shown that it is difficult and challenging to find effective learning strategies or tools for improving students’ problem-solving abilities. To cope with this problem, in this study, a hybrid approach that integrates the cognitive apprenticeship model with the collaborative learning strategy is proposed for conducting web-based problem-solving activities. Students’ problem-solving performance is examined in such a hybrid learning context. Furthermore, past studies indicate that cognitive load could affect learners’ performance; thus, the influence of cognitive load on students’ problem-solving effectiveness with this new approach is investigated in depth. The experimental results show that middle- and low-achievement students in the experimental group gained significant benefits from the hybrid approach in comparison with those who learned with the traditional approach. Accordingly, a discussion of how to accommodate the needs of different learning ability groups is provided.

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Written by learningchange

June 3, 2014 at 1:07 pm