Instruction: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives

By Ronna F. Dillon; James W. Pellegrino | Go to book overview

Given that the instructional principles are rather general, the best method for conveying to others how they might be used to develop instruction would seem to be through an example. For this reason, a case study was reported in which we developed a prototype electronics technician's course that, if executed as planned, would permit the training of persons typically excluded from such courses because of low literacy or other aptitude requirements. Additionally, because the course draws on understandings of how electronics technicians who are more expert than others work, it seems likely that such a course could produce more productive technicians than do typical courses aimed at developing considerable knowledge of the theory of electronics, but little understanding of the equipment systems to which such knowledge is applied.

Although only a small-scale tryout of parts of the experimental course has been accomplished, it was found that the course produced positive student attitudes and learning, and it was viewed favorably by electronics instructors and administrators. These findings suggest the need for further work to explicate the functional context theory of cognitive development, learning, and instruction and to apply the theory to the development of instructional programs that can address the serious educational needs of the 50 percent or so of our adult population with literacy skills below the ninth-grade level.


REFERENCES

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Brown A., & Campione J. ( 1986). "Psychological theory and the study of learning disabilities". American Psychologist 41, 1059-68.

Goffard S., Polden D., & Ward J. ( 1970). Development and evaluation of an improved radio operator course (MOS 05B20) (HumRRO-TR-70-8). Alexandria, VA: Human Resources Research Organization.

Rogoff B. ( 1982). "Integrating context and cognitive development". In M. Lamb & A. Brown (Eds.), Advances in developmental psychology. Vol. 2. Hillsdale, NJ: Eribaum.

Rouse W., & Morris N. ( 1985). On looking into the black box: Prospects and limits in the search for mental models (Report No. 85-2). Atlanta, GA: Georgia Institute of Technology, Center for Man-Machine Systems Research.

Rumelhart D. ( 1980). "Schemata". In B. Bruce & W. Brewer (Eds.), Theoretical issues in reading comprehension. Hillsdale. NJ: Erlbaum.

Shoemaker H. ( 1960). "The functional context method of instruction". IRE Transactions on Education. Vol. E-3, No. 2.

Sticht T. ( 1982). Basic skills in defense (HumRRO-PP-3-82). Alexandria, VA: Human Resources Research Organization.

Sticht T., Armstrong W., Hickey D., & Caylor J. ( 1987). "Cast-off youth: Policy and training methods from the military experience". New York: Praeger.

Sticht T., Beck L., Hauke R., Kleiman G., & James J. ( 1974). Auding and reading: A developmental model. Alexandria, VA: Human Resources Research Organization.

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