Simulations and Discovery Based Learning EXPECTATIONS? Glen O’Grady www.discovery.rp.edu.sg/home/ced
Simulations and the Future of LearningAldrich (2003) Anyone who wants to understand and contribute to education in the near future must develop a working knowledge of the philosophy of simulations. There will be a transition period when someone can go back and forth between being a teacher and being a simulation designer. But over time, the two roles will separate based on very different skill sets. Then the challenge will be, as with textbooks and videos, for teachers to evaluate and adapt simulations rather than build them.
Workshop Plan • Examine Simulations and its grounding in Discovery Based Learning • Experience Simulations • Critique these simulations against the principles of discovery based learning
What are Simulations? • A staged replication of an event (that is at least feasible) or a concept in order to enhance students' learning through a deliberate ploy to draw students into a response. • Differentiated from role plays. Simulations require the students to act as they would act in the scenario, whereas role plays assign characteristics to students' roles and encourage acting. • The association of experience with knowledge leads to internalization.
Discovery Learning • Jerome Bruner • Discovery Learning developed out of Constructivist ideas that learning is an active process of “construction”, wherein new ideas or concepts are based upon previous existing knowledge
Discovery Learning is when students … • reach a conclusion from realistic examples or experiences • ask questions and formulate their own tentative answers • are not given Content, but rather discover it independently by the learner • test hypotheses and develop generalisations
Bruner’s 3 Stages of Intellectual Development • Enactive: a person learns through actions and their outcomes • Iconic: learning can be obtained from models and pictures • Symbolic: learner has the capacity to think abstractly • Using a combination will help students master discovery learning
Simulations and the Future of LearningAldrich (2003) A single simulation can teach someone in a variety of ways all at once, and for this reason the medium is actually much closer to how people often learn from real-life experiences. For example, simulations can convey stories, scenarios, and other forms of linear content, just as lectures and books can. However, they can also do much more: By allowing for user interaction and feedback, they can be used to show how complex systems work in different circumstances. Using a simulation interface, learners can also develop an almost instinctual "muscle memory" that is characteristic of business and social interactions as much as sports. ..
3 Different Aspects of Simulations • Simulations aimed at recreating a scenario to invoke some feeling • Simulations that are virtual representations of scenarios that are not easily replicable in a classroom • Simulations that are designed to show the relationship between variables
Simulations that invoke some feeling • The King’s M&M (Max Fischer) • Blue Eyes Brown Eyes • Decision making
Virtual representations of scenarios not easily replicable in a classroom • Simulations • Bridge Building
Simulations designed to show the relationship between variables • Entropy • Axon Idea Generator • Student work
Simulations used before other educational experiences can facilitate learning more than simulations used after other experiences (Andre, et al. 1998; Brandt et al. 1991) • Students who develop simulations have the opportunity to foster a deeper understanding (Jonassen, 1996, 2000)
Bicknell-Holmes and Hoffman (2000) So lets Evaluate: • Foster exploring and problem solving, the creation, integration, and generalisation of knowledge, • Are they student driven, interest-based activities in which the student determines the sequence and frequency of their interaction • Do the Activities encourage integration of new knowledge into the learner’s existing knowledge base.