Sunday, October 24, 2010

Fitting the Pieces Together

Fitting the Pieces Together

My personal view on learning
I continue to believe that learning is both and internal and external process that develops throughout our lifespan. As we progress through the stages of developmental learning, we adjust our strategies for learning to accommodate our needs at the time.  Our internal drive for learning is shaped by our own motivation and purpose for processing information.  The way we perceive and process information is influenced by external factors; such as family, culture, and social expectations.  When I was a younger student my approach to learning relied on structured learning activities, modeling techniques and social interactions with my peers. My motivation to learn was shaped by family and cultural norms. Now that I am an adult learner, my motivation to learn is more intrinsic and learning activities are self-directed. Throughout my educational career I have been exposed to the various learning strategies proposed by the various learning theories.

Learning theories /styles that influence my learning preferences
I’ve learned that learning theories are explanations of different styles or strategies that learners use when processing information. As the theories seek to explain the way learners process information, the theory itself then attempts to place the learner into a category, but placing the learner into a single category can be detrimental. Learners use multiple intelligences to process information so learning styles often fluctuate between subjects and situations.  I have often described myself as a visual-auditory learner, which simply means that I prefer to use visual and auditory strategies to aid in the processing of information. When it comes to performing mathematical or technical tasks, my approach to learning requires hands-on or kinesthetic activities, along with explanations, modeling and mnemonic techniques. For more creative tasks, I require time to reflect and synthesize information.  So depending upon the subject or learning situation, my style will vary to accommodate my need at that time.

The role of technology in my daily learning
The advances in technology have opened up a world of abundant resources of information.  Thanks to the internet I can use search tools in Google to explore topics or wikis to gather information.  Personal websites along with blogs allow me to analyze information from a different perspective as well as share my own point of view. Social networks such a Face book allow me to keep in touch with distant friends or build a network with those who have similar interests. Online courses give me the flexibility to learn and work at my own pace, while collaborating with peers through online discussions, chat rooms and other network sites.  Technology based formats will once again change my approach to learning and the processing of information. Learning now will undoubtedly take place through a network of systems and rely on the diverse opinions and research of others.  


Ormrod, J., Schunk, D., & Gredler, M. (2009). Learning theories and instruction (Laureate custom edition). New York: Pearson.

Ertmer, P. A., & Newby, T. J. (1993). Behaviorism, cognitivism, constructivism: Comparing critical features from an instructional design perspective. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 6(4), 50–71.
Conlan, J., Grabowski, S., & Smith, K. (2003). Adult learning. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from

Davis, C., Edmunds, E., & Kelly-Bateman, V. (2008). Connectivism. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from

Gilbert, J., & Swanier, C. (2008). Learning styles: How do they fluctuate? Institute for Learning Styles Journal [Vol. l]. Retrieved from

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