Understanding Learning Essay Research Paper Understanding myself — страница 2

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that the proctored exam is coming up, I find myself mixing up what I?ve learned in one Psychology class with something that I?ve learned in another class. For example, while studying the social learning theory, I found myself repeatedly trying to incorporate cognitive dissonance into the process. Cognitive dissonance is something I had been studying in my Social psychology class. Both of these concepts are important to psychology. However, they can not be readily used my me until I really understand them and I can?t really understand them if I keep trying to merge them. Jerome Bruner?s main point in his constructivist theory is that learning is an active process in which learners construct new ideas or concepts based upon their current and past learning experiences. ?The concept

of prime numbers appears to be more readily grasped when the child, through construction, discovers that certain handfuls of beans cannot be laid out in completed rows and columns. Such quantities have either to be laid out in a single file or in an incomplete row-column design in which there is always one extra or one too few to fill in the pattern. These patterns, the child learns, happen to be called prime. It is easy for the child to go from this step to the recognition that a multiple table, so called, is a record sheet of quantities in completed multiple rows and columns. Here is factoring, multiplication and primes in a construction that can be visualized.? (Jerome Bruner, 1973, http://www.gwe.edu/~tpi/bruner.html) I had taken a class on C++ programming. The first part of

the class was problem solving, using algorithms. Once that concept was learned, we moved on to basic programming. Using algorithms to break a program down into parts helped to solve the problems encountered in writing a program. George A. Miller has provided two theoretical ideas that are very important to the information processing theory. Information processing is also a cognitive theory of learning. This theory states that information flows into the organism by way of the sense organs. It is then passed to the memory and nervous system where it is encoded (this means that memory traces are made). Then, the information can be stored in the memory and later retrieved. The three memory components are sensory register, Short-term memory, and long-term memory. Our sensory registers

are like a video camera, they ?pick up? information as it is happening. Short-term memory can be likened to the cable that carries the information from the camera to the video tape. Our short-term memory can hold only a limited amount of information for a limited amount of time. The last of the components, long-term memory, can be compared to the video tape. The video tape stores the information picked up by the camera, and carried by the cable, for an indefinite period of time, until we are ready to retrieve it (by way of a VCR). The first concept is ?chunking? and the capacity of short term memory. Miller (1956) presented the idea that short term memory could only hold about 7 items, plus or minus 2, where a chunk is any meaningful unit

(http://gwis.circ.gwu.edu/~tip/miller.html). The experience I have had with the chunking concept is rather simple. I find it easier to remember a person?s phone number if I make a word out of the last 4 digits. For example, My best friend Becka had gotten a new phone number. Since I call her all of the time, it was more convenient to learn her number than to write it down and look it up every time I wanted to speak with her. Her new number was 3287, the best way I could remember it was to put it in the form of a word- EATS. Becka no longer has that number, but I still remember it because of word. The second concept is TOTE (Test-Operate-Test-Exit). Miller thought that TOTE should replace the stimulus-response as the basic unit of behavior. In a TOTE unit, a goal is tested to see

if it has been achieved and if not an operation is performed to achieve the goal; this cycle of test-operate is repeated until the goal is eventually achieved or abandoned. Ivan Pavlov introduced us to classical when his dog began salivating at the sound of a bell. Classical conditioning occurs when a natural reflex responds to a stimulus. Classical conditioning works on people, too. Anyone who is interested in saving money can understand the significance of a blue light flashing at K-Mart. The blue light flashing usually means that there is a sale in whatever department the light is. I have gone into the local BX many times and have seen a blue light flashing, this time for a salesperson to give a customer assistance, and automatically thought there must be a sale. One of the