Information about 50 theories of learning and instruction are presented in a concise fashion with citations and links to related information within the database. These 50 theories represent the major theories in use for learning and instruction today. This website also contains definitions of 20 additional concepts ranging from anxiety to transfer with links connecting to related theories, and 18 domains ranging from aviation to troubleshooting that also link to related theories. The domains and concepts pages help the user to connect and apply theories to practice.
Type of Material:
There are several short video clips Users will need to install Quicktime 4.0 or Realplayer to view these. No link to download this plug-in is provided.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
As stated by the author, ?TIP is a tool intended to make learning and instructional theory more accessible to educators. The database contains brief summaries of 50 major theories of learning and instruction. These theories can also be accessed by learning domains and concepts.?
Target Student Population:
Masters level students with some background information on theories of learning and instruction would probably find this a useful site for review and to learn basic information about additional theories. The information provided is not extensive or detailed enough for doctoral candidates and the lack of in-depth information about each theory would be misleading to use as the sole source of information for any student in higher education. For undergraduate students in Educational Psychology, it provides a nice overview
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
None required except college-level reading ability. However, prior knowledge of learning and instructional theories will help users evaluate the accuracy and usefulness of the information presented in this database.
Summaries of each theory offer a brief overview of major tenets of each theory, a statement about the scope or application of the theory to practice, an example, a list of principles derived from the theory, and a brief list of references. Some of the 50 theories contain video clips and links to related websites. Some video clips offer information in the theorist?s own words, which lends some authenticity to the information.
Information about each theory is summarized so succinctly that users may not appreciate the scope and complexity of these theories. This should not be a user?s sole source of information about the theories described. Users should be advised, or even required, to explore the links and references provided in order to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the theoretical perspectives offered.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Potentially a good site for users to review information they have studied previously. For example, instructors teaching Educational Psychology, Learning and/or Instructional Theory, Motivation, and other foundations classes could suggest this site to students to use when reviewing for an exam, when seeking summary information about other theories of learning and instruction, or for locating basic references so they can read in more depth about these theories. I could also see this being useful as one resource among many for instructor?s developing lists of web resources for students to explore on their own. The author does not identify learning outcomes and they are not obvious to the user. Basically this is a database with brief summary information about 50 learning/instructional theories and suggestions about how these theories relate to other concepts and domains of learning.
Potential is limited by the creative application of this information to an instructor or user?s needs. Users must be cautioned not think that the information presented about each of the 50 theories is complete. This site will become more useful when other users or the author suggest ideas about how the site can be used effectively for student learning.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
Simple for teachers and students to get around to all parts of this resource/database from introductory page and using links on all pages. No instructions are needed for anyone who has browsed any websites. Most information prints out on one page, which is a bonus. All links tested during this review were active. Links within site all work logically and buttons at bottom of each screen are useful for navigation within the site. In March Quicktime was needed to view clips but in May Realtime could be used as the viewer.
Material is all text, with exception of occasional Quicktime video clips, so appeal and interactivity are quite low for most college students today. Material is engaging only because it provides information in an easily accessible manner. Page design is primitive and obviously not intended to be flashy. No graphics are included, and are probably not needed, either. Some of the screens have too much text. The design of the site allows easy access but could be made more appealing through the use of some visual design considerations.
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