Learning Theories & Effective Strategies

Topics: Educational psychology, Learning, Education Pages: 20 (3409 words) Published: January 28, 2014
Learning Theories
& Best Practices:
A Primer for Informal Science
Education Centers
**********
NOTE: Chiefly intended to preliminarily collect and
gather key insights from various research and
sources

Education & Outreach Resources

• Portal to the Public Initiative
http://www.pacsci.org/portal/initiative
Information about this project dedicated to fostering and facilitating face-to-face interactions with working scientists at science museums.

• NISE Network: RISE
http://www.nisenet.org/rise
A collection of papers, presentations and resources with a focus on partnerships in nanoscale informal science education.

• American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Center for Public Engagement with Science & Technology
http://www.aaas.org/programs/centers/pe
This Center runs public engagement events, provides education and outreach resources, science communication resources, and a speakers service.

• Space Science Institute (SSI)
http://www.spacescience.org/education/extra/resources_scientists_cd/index.html Resources for Scientists in Education and Public Outreach (E/PO). This is a collection of papers and presentations on partnerships with a focus on earth and space science outreach.

Main Research Sources

• National Research Council (National Academies Press)






How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School (2000) How Students Learn: History, Mathematics, and Science in the Classroom (2005) How Students: Learn Science in the Classroom (2005)
Surrounded by Science: Learning Science in Informal Environments (2010) Learning Science in Informal Environments: People, Places, and Pursuits (2009)

• Center on Instruction (US Dept. of Education)
– Effective Science Instruction: What does Research Tell Us? (2010)

• Project 2061 (American Association for the Advancement of Science) – Science for All Americans (1989)
• Effective Learning and Teaching
– Benchmarks for Science Literacy (1993)

• Portal to the Public Initiative (Pacific Science Center) – Implementation Manual (2011)

• The Center for Teaching & Learning (Stanford University
– Teaching for Transformation: From Learning Theory to Teaching Strategies (2005)

Learning Theories
and Models

Learning Theories and Models

Major Educational Paradigms
Behaviorism

Constructivism*

Cognitivism *

Humanism

*Portal to the Future and most modern teacher preparation programs adhere to the constructivism paradigm or world view.

Learning Theories and Models

Behaviorism
Overview
Students learning occurs as a response to environmental stimuli: • positive reinforcement (application of a desired stimulus) and negative reinforcement (withholding of an undesired stimulus) increase the probability that the antecedent behavior will reoccur;

• positive punishment (application of an undesired stimulus) and negative punishment (withholding of a desired stimulus) decreases the probability that the antecedent behavior will reoccur.

Best Practices
Educator actions directly affect student behavior and learning. It is important that educators choose the best course of action based on the desired objective, the student’s personality, and other related factors.

Related Theories
1.
2.
3.

Classical Conditioning (Pavlov)
Operant Conditioning (Skinner)
Social Learning Theory (Bandura)

Learning Theories and Models

Cognitivism
Overview
Student learning occurs as a result of generating knowledge and meaning through sequential development of an individual’s cognitive abilities:
• Input: Educators provide information through instruction or experience; • Process: The students cognitively process (e.g., recognize, recall, analyze, reflect, apply, create, understand, evaluate, or compare) the information against prior knowledge; • Output: The students generate new knowledge and meaning.

Best Practices
It is essential for educators to:
• Provide/manage the appropriate instruction...
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