Basic and Applied Memory Research: Practical Applications - Vol. 2

By Douglas J. Herrmann; Cathy McEvoy et al. | Go to book overview

This review has also indicated the ecological relevance of basic cognitive research findings. Such findings have led to the development of an emerging generation of AIS, which promise to revolutionize education. These practical applications have conversely demonstrated the usefulness and limitations of cognitive theories. As discussed, Anderson ( 1983) hypotheses regarding cognitive phenomena have been revised because of his experience with the LISP system.

This review, however, has not fully established the utility of memory theories for naturally occurring phenomena. That is, the gap between extrapolations from basic laboratory findings in memory and the performance of students for AIS remains embarrassingly large ( Davies, 1993). Also, this author had trouble finding information about the effectiveness of AIS for facilitating students' cognitive processes. Information was not found, for example, about STEAMER's effectiveness for helping students to develop the mind of an expert steam propulsion operator. Until more research findings on this topic are readily available, one can only speculate about the ecological significance of AIS and of basic cognitive research findings.

In closing, ecological notions of memory have relevance for both cognitive scientists and instructional technologists. Questions, however, remain about the validity of these notions vis-à-vis students' performance in computerized learning environments. By answering these questions, cognitive scientists will move closer toward meeting Neisser ( 1978) challenge of understanding the natural consequences of memory phenomena. They will also move closer toward a convergence of basic and applied memory research.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

The opinions expressed in this chapter are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the U.S. Army Research Institute, the U.S. Army, or the U.S. Department of Defense.


REFERENCES

Alessi, S. M. ( 1988). "Fidelity in the design of instructional simulations". Journal of Computer-Based Instruction, 15, 40-47.

Ames, C. ( 1984). "Competitive, cooperative, and individualistic goal structures: A motivational analysis". In R. Ames & C. Ames (Eds.), Research on motivation in education: Student motivation (Vol. 1, pp. 177-207). New York: Academic Press.

Anderson, J. R. ( 1983). The architecture of cognition. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Anderson, J. R. ( 1993). Rules of the mind. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Anderson, J. R., Conrad, F. G., & Corbett, A. T. ( 1989). "Skill acquisition and the LISP tutor". Cognitive Science, 13, 467-505.

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