This course has encouraged me to think on a broader scope when it comes to the scientific perspective of learning, the role of long term and short term memory and the wide range of learning styles and approaches that must be considered when designing a learning experience for others. I have always been aware that people learn in different types of ways: something I noticed from the time I was young and watched my brother read a book and promptly recite what he just read when I had to approach my studies in a more active way. In this course, I’ve found it surprising the multitude of learning theories, approaches, systems and combinations of all of them that exist and must be carefully considered when designing a course or learning activity.

I have made revelations about my personal learning process as I’ve progressed through this course. In studying the formal theories and approaches, I would consider my ideal learning styles to be founded in through practices based in adult learning theories, social learning theory and cognitive learning practices. I find that I learn best in social or interactive situations of which the information is immediately relevant or applicable to me. I can also relate to connectivism in a close way, as my use of technology and social networking.

Learning theories, styles, technology and motivation are inter-related concepts when it comes to effective instructional design. As a successful instructional designer, you need to understand how people learn, how they process information, what recall and connection strategies are being used and how it’s working for your specific learner demographic. Once you have that understanding, you can then more successfully choose how to present that information, i.e. what technologies should be incorporated or utilized to best present the information or create an environment for learning which will inspire the highest level of comprehension by the learner. Technology itself can be a motivator for the learner, as it might be a “fun” technology to work with. Technology can also provide a platform for interaction which lends to learner motivation, especially in the online learning world.

This course has definitely inspired me to change my approach to my entire design process for eLearnings and other learning experiences in my day to day job. I notice that I am spend more time considering the learner demographic(s), determine various methods in which to present the information and am able to create more useful and meaningful experience for the learners by incorporating technology and approaches that I may not have otherwise thought about implementing. My personal use of technology allows me to continue my evolving knowledge of instructional design my by visiting blogs, online communities and electronic newsletters. I am able to keep up on current trends and industry information, and since these news sources are online, they are also rich in multimedia, i.e. photographs, drawings, videos, and links to other related sources, which allow me to further expand my research or knowledge seeking activities. All of these things combined has allowed an overall result of the production of more mature work in my job and noticeable advancements in my career.

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