CUES, QUESTIONS, AND
A DVANCE ORGANIZERS
|IDENTIFYING SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES|
|SUMMARIZING AND NOTE TAKING|
|REINFORCING EFFORT AND PROVIDING RECOGNITION|
|HOMEWORK AND PRACTICE|
|SETTING OBJECTIVES AND PROVIDING FEEDBACK|
|GENERATING AND TESTING HYPOTHESES|
|CUES, QUESTIONS, AND ADVANCE ORGANIZERS|
At the beginning of an introductory high school psychology course, Mrs.
Crawford writes the word psychology on the board.Then she asks students
to tell her everything they know about the term. As students answer, she
writes key words on the board. Mrs. Crawford selects a few words to con-
sider in more depth—Freud, psychoanalysis, ego, id, bipolar, multiple personal-
ities. For each selected item, students are asked what they know to be true
or believe to be true. When she asks students what they know about Sig-
mund Freud, she is surprised at the depth of their knowledge about him. As
students address each term, Mrs. Crawford records ideas on the board. By
the end of the discussion, Mrs. Crawford has a list of the basic knowledge
students have about psychology. Throughout the course, Mrs. Crawford
uses this information as the springboard for introducing new information.
The techniques in the final category of instructional strategies all help students retrieve what they already know about a topic. In nontechnical terms, this is sometimes referred to as [activating prior knowledge.] Mrs. Crawford was activating the prior knowledge of her students in an informal but effective way.
Educational researchers have shown that the activation of prior knowledge is critical to learning of all types. Indeed, our background knowledge can even influence what we perceive. Brewer and Treyens (1981) demonstrated this effect. They brought 30 students individually into a room and told them that it was the office of a professor who was conducting an experiment. Each student was asked to wait for a short while. After 35 seconds, the students were