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Re: books on javascript?

CaMILE as a Context for a Diagnosis PBL Problem in an Educational 
Technology Class

To explore the feasibility of using the Georgia Tech CaMILE experiences 
as the basis for a PBL problem for the educational technology classes in 
the future.  

PBL as done in medical school differs markedly from what we are trying to 
do in the cognition and instruction class.  While the approach in the 
cognition and instruction class may have many merits in its own right, we 
claim that there are reasons to explore the creation of problems for the 
educational technology context that are more similar to the types of 
diagnosis problems the medical students perform.  The introduction of 
CaMILE into two classrooms at Georgia Tech provides set of "data" which 
can be "explained" or "diagnosed" from many perspectives.  As such, these 
experiences have the potential to be an excellent basis for a more 
traditional PBL problem for the educational technology context.  The 
remainder of this project will elaborate on the above claims, will 
document the process of turning the general ideas about CaMILE as a PBL 
problem into an actual problem complete with resources, and finally 
suggest an evaluation plan appropriate to this endeavor.

Argument for the pertinence of the project:
%	Introduce PBL as done in medical school - description of process, 
of learning goals, and how the two match, something about research that 
shows it to work well, maybe describe in terms of cognitive apprenticeship
%	develop a set of dimensions describing the problem based learning 
problems - as done in medical school where it works well (I have a start 
of this in the back of my tutoring PBL book)
%	characterize the differences between medical school PBL, our cog 
and inst PBL, and the edtech discussions and projects with respect to 
potential learning outcomes, cognitive skills acquired, how well the 
process is supported in general, time available, etc. 
%	use this analysis to make hypotheses, predictions, suggestions,:  
In particular use this to explore why our project idea is appropriate or 
at least interesting.
%	brief description of CaMILE project that depicts how it coud be 
used as an explanation/diagnosis/hypothesis generation problem
%	locate what we would like to do within those dimensions as well 
as what we would like to explore (what are our goals, science research or 
design and development of interventions within a given paradigm or both)

%	Learning Objectives:  Explore the space of learning objectives 
that could be approached with the CaMILE experiences as a context, Select 
a set of learning objectives that will be the target of the chosen problem
%	Problem Presentation:  Presenting the problem and the problem statement
%	Activity Plan:  Create a plan for how the problem would fit into 
the targeted class - number of students, class periods, 
%	Evaluation Plan:  Develop an evaluation plan (possibly including 
a simulation of the problem by us).
%	Resource Base:  Create the resource base to be associated with 
the problem (maybe on the Web) where the resource base is similar in 
spirit to the "book" that PBL medical students have access to.  The 
following resources are among those available..  Email messages, 
Questionnaires, Actual Notes, Focus Group, Context Descriptions - the two 
classes, the ME4901 class, Papers written for conferences

Learning Objectives: 
In this CaMILE PBL problem, students will diagnoses the problem from
two aspects:  technologies in education (computer, multimedia, etc.)
and technologies of education (learning theories).  They are both
important components of educational technologies.

On the technology side, students learn that introduction of new
technologies is not necessarily welcome to either instructors or
learners.  This is partly because that the platforms that the program
run have not been used by the learners.  For example, the original
CaMILE ran on Macintosh, but the majority of the students use PC.
Another reason may be that there are alternative ways to do the same
tasks without using the new software, in this case, CaMILE.  For
instance, in the Sustainable Technologies class, some instructors have
been using the World Wide Web and felt comfortable using it instead of
learning CaMILE.

Usabillity also plays an important role in educational technologies.  In
CaMILE, students had to spend a fair amount of time waiting for CaMILE
transferring files, which made them believe that CaMILE is not reliable.

On the learning theory side, students will learn various learning
theories, particularly, cognitive apprenticeship, collaborative
learning, and distributed cognition.  In the Sustainable Technologies
class, CaMILE was introduced as a tool to facilitate collaboration.
The software allowed them to post multimedia documents so that learners
can exchange information and make comments on others' ideas.  In
addition, note types helped the learners' reflection by software
realized scaffolding.

CaMILE does not support any specific subjects such as ME, rather it is a
general tool.  Learners will investigate differences in the roles of
general and specific tools.

Moreover, the students will learn that it takes time for educational
technologies to become effective.

Problem Presentation:  

1. Introduction:
   Brief demo of CaMILE, summary of usage in classes, data collected, and
   previous conclusions drawn.
2. The Problem:
   Various researchers' opinions put forth so far suggest that CaMILE did
   not effectively improve the learning environments in which it has been
   tested.  Provided data on the CaMILE software itself, the contexts in
   which it has been used, and the students who have used it, what evidence
   is there to support or deny this conclusion?
3. The Task: (diagnosis, or product)
   Scan a particular section of the resources available which interests
   you.  Consider the following questions as you try to interpret the data
   in a consistent and understandable way*.
   How does this data support or not support the conclusion that CaMILE
   was not effective?  What conclusions do you draw about CaMILE?
   * Does the data reveal any theories and assumptions about the learner and
     the learning process?  

Activity Plan:  
Create a plan for how the problem would fit into the targeted class - 
number of students, class periods, 
Who:  The problem would be completed by students in either educational 
technology class (the issues oriented one or the design and development one).
What:  The students will complete the PBL-CaMILE problem described in the 
previous section.
Why:  The purpose of completing the PBL problem will be at least 
   First, the problem will introduce the ideas to be discussed 
    in the remainder of the class.  
   Second, the problem will provide a context in which students, potentially 
    not familiar with educational technologies, can think about the 
    readings and activities they themselves  are doing later in the course.  
   Third, the learning issues that come out  of the problem can drive the 
    remainder of the course either proactively  through course revision 
    or reactively through forced mapping.
When:  The students will complete the problem during the first week of 
class.  Perhaps, an extra class period will be set up so that the PBL 
sessions can run their course.  This should not be too difficult during 
the first week of classes since things are not so hectic then.
Where:  The most likely place for students to work on this problem would 
be in their classroom.  It might be possible (since the problem is only 
slated to run for a week) to find a dedicated workspace for the students 
where they could pursue the problem, leave their sheets on the walls, 
leave their resources, etc (or create an online workspace).  This would 
permit us (the researchers) to compile a large set of resources (papers, 
databases, videotapes, screen shots, questionnaires, etc.) about the 
problem and leave them in the room for open access.  
How:  The group will be facilitated by the instructor of the course and 
volunteers from our project group.  If more than either people are in the 
course, then the class should split into two groups so that the groups 
will not be that large.  If this is done, then the final stage of the PBL 
process could be a presentation from the groups of their explanation as 
well as their currently unresolved learning issues and how these learning 
issues would help them understand this situation better.

Evaluation Plan:  
The evaluation plan could focus on at least three levels of evaluation:  
how well are students learning the concept targeted for the class, does 
the addition of a traditional PBL problem at the beginning of class 
improve how the class runs and how does it change the class, and does the 
more diagnosis oriented problem reduce some of the difficulties 
encountered in the cognition and instruction class when using 
non-diagnosis problems.  These three avenues of evaluation are pursued a 
little more below:
%	How well are students learning target concepts?
	- perceptions of the instructor
	- determine difficult concepts (through reading literature, 
surveys of instructors, interviews, etc.) then monitor how well students 
are understanding these concepts.
%	Is this format for the class superior/different to other formats 
and how?
	- perceptions of the instructor
	- could actually have two groups, one group would do the PBL 
problem at the beginning of the class while the other would simple 
discuss some introductory papers.  Then we could watch what happens with 
the two sets of students as the quarter progresses
	- process issues might be important.  Do the learning issues 
identified during the first week help direct the class or even appear 
during later discussions at all?  Do the students use the software as an 
example when they are talking?
%	Does the "more diagnosis" oriented problem alleviate some of the 
potential difficulties associated with PBL such as those encountered 
during the first few weeks of the cognition and instruction class?
	- value as perceived by students
	- how well does the PBL done by these students match with the PBL 
done in medical schools (given an assumption that the PBL in medical 
schools is the one which has been tested for quality, if we are going to 
generalize to the educational technology context, we need to make certain 
we are taking the tested thing not some other thing)

Resource Base:  
Create the resource base to be associated with the problem (maybe on the 
Web) where the resource base is similar in spirit to the "book" that PBL 
medical students have access to.  The following resources are among those 
available..  Email messages, Questionnaires, Actual Notes, Focus Group, 
Context Descriptions - the two classes, the ME4901 class, Papers written 
for conferences

%	PBL references
%	Evaluation references
%	Learning theories references