Monday, April 28, 2014

Final Reflection

At the beginning of this course I was familiar with different learning styles from previous classes in my life. However, this course made me take a closer look d at how those learning styles will accompany my work as an instructional designer. I was then forced to evaluate my own learning style which made me realize the positive effect it has on my learning. Knowing how I learn allows me to incorporate and enable my learning to my best abilities. This will also be the case when I am working with others. To understand how others work and what strategies better help
them learn I will be able to provide them with a modified and tailored instruction to benefit them.
Thinking about different learning theories, styles, and processes, it is important to understand that everyone has a unique learning style in some way however the process is relatively the same. Therefore, although we have our own styles of learning, rather it be memorizing, relating topics to real life situations, etc., the process in which we actually learn is relatively similar. Incorporating technology into learning creates a diverse learning experience for many. Realizing that I partake in an online learning environment I can say that the experience is different than face to face but still very rewarding. Through my experiences and observances I have also noticed an increase in motivation to learn when using technology.

My future career in instructional design will incorporate many of these ideas as I am creating learning programs for a group of people. I can use these theories and different learning styles and adjust my instruction based on them. In order to do this, I would first have to get to know my fellow students and understand what would best help and benefit them to be successful. This will too insure my success in instruction. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Fitting the Pieces Together

Looking back at the beginning of this course I thought that I had to fit into a specific mold of how I learn. Now, I am able to say that there is not one particular learning style that describes exactly how I learn. I am a mixture of a lot of learning styles, this may be true for everyone. Although there are some that I still believe are better suited to my way of learning, such as the constructivism approach. This has remained the same from the beginning of the class. Although learning of other theories more in depth, these two still seem to gear more towards the process in which I learn. Although they are not complete to how I learn, they have many of the characteristics that are portrayed within me. I have always created a more lasting learning experience when I am taught in a way that is situational. I need to be provided with a real life situation along with the objective to my learning. In week one of the class I stated "I can memorize facts and number but that only stays with me for so long before I forget it. However, if I am able to apply what I am learning to a situation and create a real world context, it creates a different kind of impression on me. I would much rather, if possible, have a hands on interaction with what I am learning about. If this is not possible, even discussing or making a relation in my head creates a more lasting understanding of what I am learning." (Romanowski, 2014) I do not believe that my idea on the process in which I learn has changed, however I was provided with more information on the different theories and how others learn. This is important as an instructional design to better help my students. 

Learning about technology and the role it has in my learning has created a different outlook on the different opportunities I am provided with. Although the process of my learning remains the same, the new ways and experiences I am given in order to learn or find information has been altered. I did not always have the internet, mobile devices, or other technology to support my learning as I do now. Taking a closer look at my learning, I have realized the extent that I have broadened my learning horizon through technology. 

Laureate Education, Inc. [Producer]. (n.d.). An introduction to learning. Retrieved from Walden course EDUC 6115. 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Connectivism: Reflection

As I have aged my networks have expanded and in turn has allowed me more opportunities to learn. I am learning from people, experiences and different places. I am better able to find resources that I may need to learn about a specific topic and I now have them more readily available to me. The wide variety and range of learning resources I have through my networks allows me to expand my learning. I have different people to learn from who have had different experiences and knowledge. The digital tools that best suit my learning include news websites to find out what is happening in the world. I find myself using websites to facilitate my learning as a teacher. Some of these websites include Pinterest, Reading a-z, blogs, and Enchanted Learning. Google Scholar is a search engine that I often find myself using when I need scholarly articles to gain more information or support my claim. This is typically used in an academic setting. I am using the internet on my phone, on my computer as well as on my Ipad. 

The beauty of having all of these resources readily at hand is that I am able to answer questions within minutes. I can use my phone, the computer or any books that may help in the search of an answer. I also find that I am surrounded by many colleagues that have many experiences previous knowledge on topics that I may not. Using them as an aid to support my learning has benefited me. 

I do believe that my personal learning networks support the central tenets of connectivism. "We must create networks which, simply defined, are connections between entities. By using these networks - of people, of technology, of social structures, of systems, of power grids, etc. - learning communities can share their ideas with others, thereby “cross-pollinating” the learning environment," (Siemens, 2005, para. 21). I am better able to use these multiple sources of information to benefit my learning. The specific sources that I have chosen help me and my personal learning because they are geared to my life style. By "cross-pollinating" the learning environment we are able to share our networks with others and learn from each other.