The design of a study aid for synthesizing instruction
AbstractExperts in the field have acknowledged that the 1990s bring new challenges to the field of educational technology. The traditional models for designing instruction will need to be modified to address the new capabilities of emerging technologies (Alien, Dodge & Saba, 1989; Hannafin & Rieber, 1989). And research must be conducted to guide the development of instructional design and technology theory and models (Klein, 1989; Reigeluth, 1989).
In his review of the status of current research in instructional technology (IT), Clark (1989) recommends that future research must go beyond descriptive research methods to adopt prescriptive research methodology. He recommends that IT researchers use the more basic, descriptive research findings from individual differences and developmental psychology to create 'design prescriptions'. These prescriptions can then be used in design research to produce generalizations about the best methods to be used with specific tasks and learners to increase achievement and motivation. The study reported here is an example of this type of design research.
In this study the researcher used a prescriptive instructional design theory, the elaboration theory (Reigeluth & Stein, 1983), to construct a study aid called a theoretical synthesizer and test its effectiveness in helping biology students learn genetics principles.
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