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Implementing Cognitive Apprenticeship. impact of educational technology on student learning. In the teaching of decision analysis skills, cognitive apprenticeship is a way to learn. In a relationship with an expert, students are scaffolded to learn to analyze and decide like an expert.

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implementing cognitive apprenticeship

Implementing Cognitive Apprenticeship

impact of educational technology on student learning

ca for teaching decision analysis
In the teaching of decision analysis skills, cognitive apprenticeship is a way to learn. In a relationship with an expert, students are scaffolded to learn to analyze and decide like an expert.

The desired behavior is first modeled for the student

The model (or framework) is treated so that the student can perform behavior alone.

An exploration can begin, where students are looking for other possibilities in deciding, see other perspectives, and learn to see the complexity of many factors influencing each other in deciding.

CA for teaching decision analysis
six instructional methods of cognitive apprenticeship






provides opportunities for students to observe an expert's practices. The learning situation must include exemplars of how an expert performs the tasks.

offers students help in the form of hints, scaffolding, feedback, modelling, goal setting and reminders while they are carrying out tasks.

provides temporary support by teachers for those parts of the tasks students have difficulty performing. The support can take the forms of suggestions or direct help. Fading consists of the gradual removal of this support until students are on their own.

requires that students explicitly express their knowledge, reasoning, or problem solving processes for problems or issues that they are tackling. Articulations can include students engaging in a dialogue, verbalizing their thoughts, or assuming the role of monitor or critic in cooperative activities.

offers a mechanism for students to externalize their metacognitive processes and hence open them for evaluation. It enables them to compare their own problem-solving processes with those of an expert and other students.

invites students to tackle and solve problems independently. Usually, instructors set general goals and teach exploration strategies. Students then are encouraged to focus on particular sub-goals within learning tasks, or even revise the general goals in order to come up with their own problem solutions.

six instructional methods of cognitive apprenticeship
learning tools
Learning tools
  • Case-based Learning
  • CSCW (computer supported cooperative work)
    • Collaborative tools include computer conferencing, electronic mail, and shared workspace
    • Cognitive tools include performance support, hypermedia, and navigation functions.
instructional library

Domain knowledge

Reflective questions

Testing questions

Problem solving strategies

Problems solving samples

Expert solutions

Peer solutions

Case analysis guidelines

Online discussion

text- and graphic-based business scenarios

conceptual and factual knowledge and procedures

evaluate learner understanding

procedures modeled by experts or learners

example case solutions

expert's advice and/or solutions for a case

various versions of solutions for a case provided by learners

instructions and hints of conducting case-based learning

repository of dialogue among learners and experts

Instructional Library
ca in action
CA in action
  • Cognitive apprenticeships are situated within the social constructivist paradigm. They suggest students work in teams on projects or problems with close scaffolding of the instructor.
  • In situated cognition, problem solving activities should not be "neat" and pre-defined, but rather, complex with students required to discover relevant procedures. Thus, a situated multimedia program will not reflect a drill-and-practice environment, but more closely approximate a resource set from which relevant information is sorted and derived by students.
  • Multimedia should not flow in a linear fashion, but provide students with multiple perspectives on presented issues that they must judge. Further, multimedia should require students to collaborate and act upon presented information, by developing hypotheses and solution plans in teams. Coaching and scaffolding is a key part of situated materials. Although hints and prompts can be embedded in programs, teachers will need to closely monitor student use and understanding of programmed help, providing additional support when needed.
  • Perhaps the most critical component of situated learning is communication among peers.