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Objectivist vs Constructivist Ideas and Situated Cognition

Objectivist vs Constructivist Ideas and Situated Cognition

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Objectivist vs Constructivist Ideas and Situated Cognition

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  1. Objectivist vs Constructivist Ideas and Situated Cognition

  2. One-Sided Models • Two major categories of one-sided models • Objectivist/representationist/traditional; transmissive/teacher-directed • Child-centred/permissive

  3. Objectivist/Representationist/Traditional, etc. Model • Role of teacher • in control (packaging, flow, sequencing, etc) • authority of knowledge • knowledge ‘dispenser’ • place in room? • listening -- what for? • evaluating -- how and what for? • goal is convergence

  4. Objectivist/Representationist/Traditional, etc. Model • Role of learner • To listen to the ‘expertise’ being ‘dispensed’ • To respond appropriately --when asked • To learn (by rote) • To conform to teacher expectations

  5. Objectivist/Representationist/Traditional, etc. Model • Role of subject matter • Objective ‘truths’ beyond question • Reality of an external world that can be acquired by representation • Compartmentalized, segmented into learner ‘portions’ • Curriculum as ‘written’ = curriculum as ‘lived’

  6. Child-centred Model The extreme form of child-centredness • places the child at the centre of all learning decisions • portrays teacher as either having no expertise or not sharing that expertise • portrays curriculum as arbitrary and flexible (whatever happens is fine) • testing (evaluation) is individual

  7. Constructivism • Role of teacher • Facilitator/mediator of learning • Teacher place--anywhere • Type of listening -- what for? • Goal is divergence--everyone learning in a unique individual way • Learning occurs through social interaction/negotiation • Evaluation--student understanding

  8. Constructivism • Role of learner • Takes responsibility for learning • Led by own ideas, informed by ideas of others • Participate in a classroom learning environment • Listen to others (including teachers) • Learning occurs as an individual constructed act in a milieu of social interaction/negotiation

  9. Constructivism • Role of Subject Matter/Curriculum • Interpreted with student needs in mind • Curriculum as written (intended) does not equal curriculum as lived • Curriculum is viewed as a guide and can change • Children’s contributions are valued • Integrated, meaningful, holistic

  10. Constructivism • Yuan Feng (1996) defines constructivism as follows: • “In general, constructivist learning theories hold that at the heart of constructivism is the notion that knowledge is constructed based on personal views of the world. What we know to be real is the result of historical and social processes of meaning-making, language-making, and symbol-system-making. This social construction of reality applies to our knowledge of physical reality as well as to our knowledge of social reality. This is to say that knowledge is embedded in a social context and can be accepted by a certain social community only.”

  11. Constructivism • Within the constructivism learning theory ‘camp’ there are three major differing views (of reality). • The radical constructivist point of view holds that there is no single reality nor any objective entity—each can have a different world view, based on perspectives and experiences. “The reality of the same object or event understood by different individuals may not be the same. Knowledge is something dependent on the ways people look at the world. There are many ways to structure the world and there are many meanings or perspectives for any event or concept” (p. 75).

  12. Constructivism • “Moderate constructivists believe that there is a structure in the world, both physical and epistemological, which place constraints on knowing that largely come from the community of which one is a member. Nevertheless, there are sufficient degrees of freedom in the structure of physical and epistemological worlds to allow people to construct their own personal theories of their environments. They think that the mind is instrumental and essential in interpreting events, objects, and perspectives on the real world and that it filters information, assembling it into a meaning that is personal and individualistic” (p. 76).

  13. Constructivism • “Constructivists of the more rational point of view also claim that reality is more in the mind of the knower and that the knower constructs and/or interprets a reality based on his or her apperception. They do not preclude the existence of an external reality, nor do they claim that reality is completely individualistic. They think that people are clearly able to comprehend a variety of interpretations and use those to generate their own understandings. They agree that knowledge acquisition is a dialectical process. They recognize the dynamic nature of learning. They acknowledge the importance of what students bring to instruction, including their schemata, mental models, and current knowledge of the world. Learning is an intentional and constructive act. Students are active participants in their own knowledge creation by the process of plugging new information into their existing schema, then interpreting, digesting, and organizing it into meaningful patterns” (p. 77).

  14. Transformation!! How? • Objectivist ---> Constructivist • Beliefs ---> pedadgogy ---> structure/activities • Pedagogy ---> structure/activities ---> beliefs • Structure/activities ---> pedagogy ---> beliefs

  15. Transformation!! How? • Variety of routes • Different times in career • What needs to be in place for any transformation to occur? • When will transformation NOT occur?

  16. Community of Learners (COL) Modeland Cognitive Apprenticeship (Situated Cognition) Model • From constructivism (rational) and Vygotsky’s work • Participation in communities • Apprenticeship in the community (culture) • Expert is flexible (more so in COL) • Asymmety of roles • All contributions valued, validated, and shared

  17. Community of Learners Model

  18. Community of Learners Model • Integrated model emphasizing education of the whole child • Children develop a motivation to learn and responsibilities for choices through collaboration • COL involves ‘living’ together • Adults are leaders and facilitators

  19. Community of Learners Model • Children’s interests are considered and they have input and make choices • Evaluation is through observation and active involvement with child--conferencing is important • Learning takes place within a meaningful social context • Notion of ‘expert’ varies and all roles are asymmetrical

  20. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • Learning and cognition are ‘situated’ and cannot be separated from the situation in which learning occurs • Conceptual knowledge like tools--understood through use; using them changes the user’s view of the world and adopting the belief system of the culture in which they are used

  21. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • The community and its viewpoint, quite as much as the tool itself, determine how a tool is used • To learn to use tools, students must enter that community and its culture • The culture in which a tool is normally used and the school culture may differ; how can we create ‘authentic’ classroom activity?

  22. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • Just Plain Folks (JPFs) (apprentices) differ from practitioners (e. g., apprentice tailor and master tailor) • JPFs can solve problems within the framework of the context that produced them (e. g., weight watchers), but may not be able to solve the same problem algorithmically

  23. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • Cognitive Apprenticeship methods try to enculturate students into authentic practices through activity and social interaction in a way similar to that evident in craft apprenticeship

  24. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • Procedures that are characteristic of cognitive apprenticeship: • "By beginning with a task embedded in a familiar activity, it shows the students the legitimacy of their implicit knowledge and its availability as scaffolding in apparently unfamiliar tasks • By pointing to different decompositions, it stresses that heuristics are not absolute, but assessed with respect to a particular task--and that even algorithms can be assessed in this way

  25. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • By allowing students to generate their own solution paths, it helps make them conscious, creative members of the culture of problem-solving mathematicians. And, in enculturating them through this activity, they acquire some of the culture's tools--a shared vocabulary and the means to discuss, reflect upon, evaluate, and validate community procedures in a collaborative process" (p. 39).

  26. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition

  27. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • "Cognitive emphasizes that apprenticeship techniques actually reach well beyond the physical skills usually associated with apprenticeship to the kinds of cognitive skills more normally associated with conventional schooling" (p. 39).

  28. Cognitive Apprenticeship and Situated Cognition • " . . . the term apprenticeship helps to emphasize the centrality of activity in learning and knowledge and highlights the inherently context-dependent, situated, and enculturating nature of learning. And apprenticeship also suggests the paradigm of situated modeling, coaching, and fading" (p. 39).

  29. SUMMARY • Objectivism and Constructivism are in themselves world views (ontologies). They also dictate specific views of knowledge, which in turn dictate specific views of pedagogy and androgogy, which in turn dictate specific teaching practices, choice of activities, materials etc.

  30. CHALLENGE • Computer technology is now present in most classrooms. My challenge to you is to think through the two major world views and also the models (COL and CA) to consider how teachers with these particular beliefs would approach the use of technology in the classroom.

  31. CHALLENGE • Which world view and which learning model (don’t feel limited to the two we looked at) best advantage the use of technology? • Maybe there is no ONE view or model. Maybe we need to develop a more eclectic model that will appropriately address the use of technology in schools (or how we feel technology should be used in schools)

  32. CHALLENGE • You might want to organize your thoughts around the commonplaces of curriculum (role of teacher, learner, curriculum, milieu) • You might want to examine • the world (reality) --knowledge • mind --symbols • learning