Activity 2.3 Theories of active learning: Collaboration

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I have chosen the collaborative learning theory, collaborative learning is learning based around a cohort of at least two students, or greater. This cohort work together sharing information, practice and ideas on solving one or multiple problems that have been tasked to them with a nod to Knowles guidance on “making things happen by releasing the energy of others

I have worked with students cohorts collaboratively both as trainer and in support roles. I find this “style” of learning fosters greater cohort cohesion and can offer a supportive style of learning experience that cannot be found in a traditional face to face learning environment. Participants work differently based around cohort prior experience and the need to achieve a set goal. In my experience I find participants are less likely to be afraid to ask questions, provided that they are made to feel included and part of the group from the outset.

To design collaborative learning, I would aim to set each participant of a cohort at least one individual task that tests their “intention to understand”, one task that “relates and reflects on their prior knowledge” and have this information fit into the collaborative jigsaw, with the cohort finding the answer collectively to one or more larger overall group activities. Almost like a treasure hunt of information that is to be found out, investigated then pieced together, using online and offline media (library based) and prior experience. Such an activity would take time to plan, but once correctly planned and tested this framework could be re-used with adaptions as required.

The process would be supportive of participant needs, through the use of webinar sessions with course leader and the rest of cohort. Prior questioning of users skills and expectations through use of the “Am I ready” questionnaires would help aid this process.

Whilst planning and implementing the “learning design” I would make use ADDIE model.

Web links:

Addie Model:
http://www.learning-theories.com/addie-model.html

Collaborative learning:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collaborative_learning

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