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It is surprising to me how many different ways of understanding this article are apparent in the answers given. It seems that each person's attention was drawn by a different aspect, and answers to what was most interesting and what was the main message were very divergent. To me the most interesting response was to question 4. Several people described their most important learning experiences as being things that took them outside of their comfort zones including a number of travel experiences ranging from a long outward bound esperience to just traveling to a conference.

1. what did you find
1.1. interesting about the article?

Several people found the examples, including the cat in the box, fish is fish, and darts underwater interesting because they “clearly demonstrated the concepts presented.”

The people in our class who teach or have an interest in teaching all found the article’s implications for teaching—recommendations and “new approaches”—to be interesting.

1.2. not interesting about the article?

It seems that everyone was missing 2 pages of the article.
Several people found the entire article to be interesting, others thought the article was poorly organized (choppy, needs more summary), and 2 people criticized content (“right tool” analogy cliché and uninformative, intro adds nothing.)

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

There was a little more consensus for this question, but still quite a variety of answers.
Most people considered the main message to be along these lines: “Cognitive science has something to say about how eduecation should be; it tells us it should be A, B, C.” Where ABC were different for each person and included: it should be customized to different learning styles, it should move beyond the basics, it should include metacognitive training, it should aim to develp people who can reason, not just memorize…

3. analyze and describe how you have learnt a complex systems (e.g.,“Microsoft Word” or a similar system incase you have never learnt MS-Word, Photoshop, Java, using the Web effectively, …)?

Quite a few of the answers seem to say that learning a complex system proceeds in two stages. First is a stage from novice to competence where trial and error and collaborative approaches are more useful. Second is a stage from competence to expert where actively thinking and playing is more important and documentation becomes more useful.

4. describe the most interesting / exciting learning episode of your life!

In their answers to this question at least 4 or 5 of my classmates described experiences that involoved travel.

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

5.1. learning by being told

Everyone has encountered this in school and lecture situations. Several people have bad associations with this type of learning: menial jobs, low-quality educational experiences, experiences that did not result in learning… A couple people said good things: it’s appropriate at a certain time (when the learner is young or inexperienced in a subject) or when the teacher is a certain kind of person (an elder or an expert like a doctor).

5.2. self-directed learning

Intrinsic motivation was the theme of these answers.

5.3. learning on demand

Most people think of this as “learning in order to complete a task”

5.4. discovery learning

There were two groups of answers here. Some people think of discovery learning as accidental learning that happens in the course of doing something else, others think of it as deliberate (not accidental) but inquiry based and exploratory.

5.5. experiential learning

The phrase “learning by doing” was included in about half the anwers to this one.

5.6. informal learning

Near consensus on this one: Informal learning is any learning that takes place outside formal educational settings.
Here’s one answer that I found interesting: “ my experience more friendly interactions between whoever is the teacher and whoever is the student. Sometimes it's not obvious which is which.”

5.7. collaborative learning

6. which media support have you used and are you using for your learning?

compiled list:

group meetings
video games
computers simulations
our swiki
the CAETE program
computer applications
printed technical manuals

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