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Assignment 9, Jun Chen

1. what did you find

1.1. interesting about the article?

The article mentioned the development of the science of the learning, which is very interesting. The human mind or, to be more specific, the process of learning is so complex that I really wonder whether we could get a precise understanding of it some day.

1.2. not interesting about the article?


2. what do you consider the main message of the article?

The main message is that learning is very complex and teaching and design of classroom environment should consider how people learn and the particular learners.

3. analyze and describe how you have learnt "Microsoft Word" (or a similar system incase you have never learnt MS-Word)

I learned Microsoft Word a long time ago, so couldn¡¯t clearly remember how I learned it. It was around 1996, the Microsoft Word was simpler than today. The learning was pretty natural. Before that, I had used other editing environments for programming. The learning is very much on-demand learning. I didn¡¯t read any manual before or during the learning. I just started the application and explored the software. I played around and read the help file sometimes or asked other people. Even today, I don¡¯t know many parts of Microsoft Word and I don¡¯t think that I am going to learn them unless I need to use them.

4. speculate of all the "information/knowledge" which you have today – how you have learnt it?; give a brief description of the two most interesting episodes

I got most of my scientific knowledge from school. I learn from lectures, textbooks, homework, projects, discussions and tests. Doing homework to solve a problem really helps me learn. I remember that in my college mathematical analysis class, I did lots of exercises outside of the class. It was very time-consuming. But without doing those exercises, I wouldn¡¯t have understood it that well.

I learned about society, life and culture by reading newspaper, talking to people and surfing the Internet. When I first came to the U.S., I had no idea about the credit system here. I even didn¡¯t know the difference between a credit card and a debit card. I asked around, I read the booklet from the bank and I went to bulletin board systems to see how people say about different kinds of cards. That¡¯s how I learned.

5. write in one short paragraph (a) what the following concepts means and (b) which role they have played in your learning (e.g., where you have encountered them)

5.1. learning by being told (meaning, personal relevance)

This is to learn by listening to what people tell you. This happens a lot at school. For example, this is exactly how I learned history in the elementary school.

5.2. self-directed learning (meaning, personal relevance)

This is to learn by yourself. For example, I want to know the capital of Montana. Then I search online, go to some website and find out the information.

5.3. discovery learning (meaning, personal relevance)

The learning is to discover. The result of this learning is unknown and needs to be discovered. For example, in our independent research, we are going to do a survey about the collaboration in college classrooms. We don¡¯t know what the answers for this survey would be. This is a kind of discovery learning.

5.4. experiental learning (meaning, personal relevance)

This is to learn by doing and through personal experience. The chemical experiments I did in the middle school fall into this category.

5.5. informal learning (meaning, personal relevance)

This is kind of learning which happens in an informal setting. It is not planned. For example, I chatted with my friend during the lunch. Then she told me that school offers free software for filing tax. I didn¡¯t know that before. This is informal learning.

5.6. collaborative learning (meaning, personal relevance)

This is to learn with other people. I have participated quite a few group projects, which are collaborative learning. Often, collaborative learning could be more interesting and more productive. But, there are also many difficulties for collaborative learning. For example, scheduling for group meeting is always difficult.

6. which media have you used for your learning?

Paper-based materials, including books, papers, lecture notes and so on. Internet (for searching). Bulletin board systems or forums. Softwares.

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