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Activity Theory highlights that human activity is mediated by tools in a broad sense. Tools can be classified as external (hammer, computer, car) and internal (plans, cognitive maps). Tools are produced and transformed as the activity takes place, and their use creates social knowledge. The use of tools affects both the external behavior and the internal cognitive functioning of the individuals. Tools can facilitate or limit the limit or enable the mediation of social interaction, and they can affect the social structure as well as the behavior of the actors, meaning those who use the tools.

Living in the 21st century, the so-called digital age, it goes without question a new theory is needed to meet the expectations of digital-native individuals. In relation to this need, George Siemens's new learning theory ‘connectivism’ formulates a new pedagogical paradigm as a guide for the digital age thanks to the rapid developments in Internet technology, distinguished it from behaviourism, cognitivism and constructivism, indicating that in the early days of these theories, technology, as we know it nowadays, was not something to be taken for granted. Emphasizing the potential of the IT, which facilitates access to information and provides individuals with an immense wealth of knowledge as well as social networks, He exposed the limitations of past theories, stating that “these theories do not address learning that occurs outside of people and they fail to describe how learning happens within organizations” (p. 2).

On the other hand, considering the main principles of MOOCs, they can be based upon the ideas of connectivism in that they focus on globally connected online communities and huge networks of resources and individuals who have unrestricted access to learning contents (Downes, 2008). Their application can make students acquire information about any subject they want with no limitations of space or time. MOOCs are grounded in connectivism, so they offer an alternative option for blended information technology practices.

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Introduced by an American psychologist, Jerome Bruner in 1961, Discovery Learning is a method of Inquiry-Based Instruction, or it can be considered as an active, hands-on style of learning. In this model, individuals actively seek answers and solutions, rather than absorb what is said or read. It is based on the “learning by doing” principle. In this model, teachers encourage learners to use their imagination and creativity by interacting with them to see what they are doing, bearing in mind that there is more than one way to get to an end goal.

With this method, learners perform experiments, explore their environment, and actively participate in every possible engagement. They search for new information to discover facts and are encouraged by teachers to think, ask questions, and collaborate with others. Teachers help students apply new skills solve problems as wells as drawing conclusions. However, teachers don't think of learners as empty vessels to fill with knowledge, rather they acknowledge that learners have some background knowledge and they can apply this knowledge through confidence in problem-solving.

The Discovery Learning Method facilitates comprehension by activating background knowledge through explicit instructional support. Teachers should design activities and tasks in a way that learners should be involved in the process. In order for learners to benefit from the facilitating role of this method, learners need to get exposed to that knowledge in a systematic way. Therefore, teachers should plan activities that will increase the familiarity of the students with that specific topic. This can be achieved by diversifying and reinforcing the same themes in various ways. Also, students’ needs and wants should be taken into account as the more they familiarize themselves with the topics, the more they will comprehend. As students’ mental capacity might change across individuals, teachers should not rely on the facilitative role of this method for every individual. Namely, teachers should not take the working mental capacity of the learners for granted. Rather, they should make up for the limitations of individuals by increasing background knowledge. Through explicit instructional support, they can enhance, promote, improve, facilitate, foster, activate, enrich the type (e.g., designing various tasks and projects), amount (e.g., developing and planning extra-curricular thematic activities) and quality (e.g., diversifying teaching techniques, integrating technology, designing authentic activities that will support constant engagement) of their teaching materials and style, in a way that will provide more background knowledge for each individual.

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Hakkımda

Muhammed Özgür YAŞAR

Merhaba, ben Muhammed Özgür YAŞAR. Dil sınavlarına yönelik yayınlanmış 14 adet kitabım bulunmaktadır. YDS, YÖKDİL ve YDT, YKS-DİL'e yönelik Online Canlı ve Yüz Yüze dersler vermekteyim. Özel ders için iletişim: [email protected] 

Dil sınavlarında uzmanı olduğum alanlar: YDS, YÖKDİL, YKS-DİL, Tıpdil, Gramer, Çeviri Teknikleri, Vocabulary ve Writing.

Aynı zamanda Osmangazi Üniversitesi Eğitim Fakültesi İngilizce Öğretmenliği Bölümü'nde Öğretim görevlisi olarak çalışmaktayım. 2000 yılında Çukurova Üniversitesi İngilizce Öğretmenliği Bölümü'nden mezun oldum. Akademik olarak; ELT, MOOC, Flipped Learning, Applied Linguistics ve Language and Technology konularına ilgi duymaktayım.

Akademik çalışmalarımın olduğu alanlar: MOOCs, LMOOCs, Flipped Learning, Language and Technology, SLA, EFL, ELT

Yüz yüze Eğitimlerim: Eskişehir Osmangazi Üniversitesi ESOGÜSEM - Tel: 0222 239 9628 / 0222 239 3750 Dahili: 5071/5072 web: http://esogusem.ogu.edu.tr/web/tr

Not: Özel dersler ESOGÜSEM işbirliğiyle yapılmaktadır.