Salt Lake City, Utah
June 20, 2004
June 20, 2004
June 23, 2004
9.855.1 - 9.855.12
Learning Theories: Applications for Instruction in Constraint- Based Solid Modeling and Other Engineering Graphics Topics
Nathan W. Hartman, Theodore J. Branoff Purdue University/North Carolina State University
Abstract Constraint-based modeling tools, as well as computer graphics tools in general, offer the user many choices in commands and techniques for creating graphics, which forces the user to have a strategy or plan as they proceed. The formulation of this plan is often dependent on the integration of existing knowledge and current factors, such as customer specifications and the time element assigned to the particular project. In addition, the user must have a thorough understanding of the software functionality and the ability to gather information related to implementing a particular modeling strategy. This process of strategy development and implementation coincides with components of learning theory. As engineering graphics educators, it is helpful to reflect on how students learn in our classrooms and laboratories as well as reflect on how we develop instruction. This paper outlines three theories of learning that are applicable to graphics education, discusses the assumptions about the learner and the learning environment, presents the components of learning for each theory, discusses major issues related to complex learning and designing instruction, and summarizes some of the criticisms and contributions to education of each theory. Indeed, a process is presented for applying elements of these learning theories to constraint-based modeling.
Introduction Throughout the development of human civilization, people have learned about specific topics and how to do certain things, often without thinking about the process through which they have accomplished such things. Teaching was often done by parents or “masters” with little consideration given to a framework for this instructional experience. Whether or not they recognized their own particular allegiance to a learning theory, teachers were likely teaching as they had been taught themselves. These educational experiences often focused on practical issues relevant to daily life, but when educational settings became more structured in the form of schools, students were often not able to see the relevance of the topic they were learning. Since that time, teachers have been aware that these formalized educational settings often lack efficiency and effectiveness, some of which can be attributed to the lack of a sound theoretical basis for learning and instruction 1.
Any particular learning theory has with it an implied set of classroom practices for the design of instruction and the assessment of learning. The manner in which educators select learning materials and design classroom experiences for their students is dependent in large part on how they define “learning” 1. However, it should be noted that there are differences between several terms which are central to this discussion, namely philosophy, learning theory, and instructional strategy, and that the focus of this paper deals predominantly with learning theories and their applications to engineering design graphics instructional strategies. Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition. Copyright 2003, American Society for Engineering Education
Branoff, T., & Hartman, N. (2004, June), Learning Theories: Applications For Instruction In Constraint Based Solid Modeling And Other Engineering Graphics Topics Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13008
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