June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
Continuing Professional Development
14.254.1 - 14.254.12
Assessment of Innovative Environments That Address Intellectual Curiosity
Mysore Narayanan, Miami University, Ohio.
Leading scholars in the area of Cognitive Science and Educational Methodologies have concluded that it is essential that students need to be taught in a learning environment that enables them to acquire problem-solving skills. The 21st century workplace does not need employees who have just mastered a particular body of information, instead it prefers to have liberally educated workforce who have mastered written and oral communication skills in addition to acquiring knowledge in their chosen discipline. (Saxe, 1988; Senge, 1990; Sims, 1995). Educators should not allow the students to wonder whether they have been learning anything that would actually serve them in the workplace, upon graduation. (Barr & Tagg, 1995). It is also important to recognize that state legislatures have introduced demands for outcome assessment (Magill & Herden, 1995). Researchers have shown that systematic use of technology actually helps instructors address perceptual dimensions of learning. Technology should not be viewed just as a growing trend; rather it must be intelligently implemented as a valuable instructional tool that can accommodate diverse learning styles of 21st century students. (Watkins, 2005). It is important to acknowledge that the intellectual curiosity of students can be increased so that they learn better when alternative modes of information processing are made available at college campuses. Dr. Walter B. Barbe, a nationally known scholar and authority in the fields of reading and learning disabilities has shown that perceptual modality styles provides an indication of an individual’s dominant learning mode. This is where the intellectual curiosity of the learner thrives. The degree of processing speed, accuracy and retention that an individual is able to accomplish when encountering information depends upon to what extent the medium in which information presented matches his or her learning style. (Barbe & Milone 1980 and 1981). In this presentation, the author describes how he has implemented Barbe’s ideas into his classroom activities and has created different learning environments for engineering students. The author also outlines how interactive projects can help the instructor in promoting a learning environment filled with exercises that promote intellectual curiosity. Furthermore, he also provides initial results of his assessment data.
In order to motivate students and generate Intellectual Curiosity, one can follow the guidelines provided by Gardner. Quarter of a Century ago, in 1983, Harvard University Professor Howard Gardner introduced the theory of Multiple Intelligences The author has presented this at other conferences and he has reproduced the list below. (Narayanan,
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