The first thing I would like to note down about my reflection this week is that the reflection topic seems to be the same as in topic 3 without any change whatsoever. I wondered if it is by chance or if this week’s reflection is just an extension of topic 3 reflection.
Now that I have written this I would like to switch to what I learned from drafting the Synthesis paper. There is a lot out there to read but not so much after 2010, it seems. My chosen topic underwent some modifications but I still stuck to Cognitive learning theory and Cognitive Load Theory. And researched the implication of this theory and approaches to learning to online learning .
First, I managed to relate the theory to the reality due to some very good practical examples in the articles I found online. I am still unsure about the title and the synthesis paper still needs quite a lot of polishing but this will be my focus in the coming month. I learned a lot from the articles I read and it was especially interesting to me to read about the recent research on the topic of CLT and how it related to online education. I could easily relate some of the findings as a result of studies to my own online experiences as an online instructor and as an online student.
One especially relevant study was the study about the quality of online discussions and strategies to improve that based on CLT. It gave me some ideas on what my discussions should not be like and how to improve their design. It also confirmed my long-standing suspicion that discussions in the format in which they are presented in most of my online courses- both as a teacher and as a student, are totally irrelevant due to the extraneous cognitive load they impose on learners