Evidence for Various Research-based Instructional Strategies: Countering Critiques


Originally posted by Doug Holton at EdTechDev:

There are several bloggers continuing to criticize constructivist-inspired teaching methods.  They almost always base their criticisms on a 2006 opinion piece by Kirshner, Sweller (inventor of Cognitive Load Theory), and Clark entitled “Why Minimal Guidance During Instruction Does Not Work: An Analysis of the Failure of Constructivist, Discovery, Problem-Based, Experiential, and Inquiry-Based Teaching.” The authors of this piece have also gone on to criticize videogames, pedagogical agents, and other constructivist-inspired teaching methods and technologies, but curiously, not simulations, which they like, even though I would call simulations one of the most quintessential constructivist learning environments (you wouldn’t want an airplane pilot who only learned from lectures and worked examples, would you?).  Why are so many bloggers citing this piece?  Partly because biased criticisms of constructivism were put all over Wikipedia in 2007 by a grad student, and many bloggers today get their opinions about education and psychology from Wikipedia (or other bloggers who read Wikipedia)…

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