Theory Supporting Design Guidelines for Web-Based Instruction

Theory Supporting Design Guidelines for Web-Based Instruction

Dorothy Leflore (North Carolina A&T State University, USA)
Copyright: © 2000 |Pages: 16
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-878289-59-9.ch006
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More and more universities are turning to Web-based instruction in order to accommodate a larger student population. Much of the coursework available online follows the traditional packet type system that has been available for printed correspondence courses. The major difference has been synchronous and asynchronous communication, not just between the instructor and students but among the students. However, learning can be enhanced if attention is given to how the material to be learned is presented and how students are required to interact with and interpret the material. Learning theories can be used to provide sound guidelines for designing a variety of presentation modes and student activities online. Examples provided later in this chapter come from an on-line course in Learning Theories at North Carolina A & T State University which was designed and taught by Karen Smith-Gratto. A primary theory to consider is Gestalt theory because the main focus of Gestalt theorists was to explore perception and its relationship to learning. Smith-Gratto and Fisher (1998-99) stated “The screens rely heavily on the ‘visual perception’ of the learner” (p. 3). Consequently, the Laws of Perception should be the foundation for visually designing and evaluating the Web-based instructional page. Some of the Laws of Perception that would be beneficial in designing Web-based instructional pages are figure-ground contrast, simplicity, proximity, similarity, symmetry, and closure. In addition to the Laws of Perception, Gestalt theory can also provide guidance in the development of activities for students to engage in during the Web-based learning experience. While modern cognitive theory is in some respects an outgrowth of Gestalt theory, there are differences that can be exploited to provide additional approaches to Web-based instruction. There are several approaches from cognitive theory that can be used to help design what appears on the Web-based instructional page and help design student interactions. Cognitive mapping or webbing, concept attainment activities, and use of motivational graphics, animations and sounds are ways that cognitive theory can substantially contribute to the instruction. In addition to Gestalt and cognitive theory, constructivism can be drawn upon to create Web-based instructional activities that require students to approach learning in different ways. Guidelines for developing Constructivist based activities require that students be given active and engaging tasks that require more than minimal intellectual involvement. Examples of such tasks include student development of models and metaphors to explain what they are learning. Students can be provided with demonstration simulations that are not explained. Students are then required to explain what happened within the demonstration and construct definitions and explanations based upon what they observed. In addition to these types of activities, students can be required to participate in on-line problem solving activities both alone and with other students.

Complete Chapter List

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Table of Contents
Beverly Abbey
Chapter 1
Theo J. Bastiaens, Rob L. Martens
This chapter presents two converging developments. Traditionally, learning at schools or universities and working in a professional context were... Sample PDF
Conditions for Web-Based Learning with Real Events
Chapter 2
Zane L. Berge, Mauri Collins, Karen Dougherty
Successful course creation for the Web environment means much more than the use of documents uploaded and electronically linked together. Course... Sample PDF
Design Guidelines for Web-Based Courses
Chapter 3
Louis H. Berry
The advent of Web-based instruction, which relies upon hypertext models of interaction and design, reemphasizes the need for a clear understanding... Sample PDF
Cognitive Effects of Web Page Design
Chapter 4
Curtis J. Bonk, Jack A. Cummings, Norika Hara, Robert B. Fischler, Sun Myung Lee
Owston (1997, p. 27) pointed out that, “Nothing before has captured the imagination and interests of educators simultaneously around the globe more... Sample PDF
A Ten-Level Web Integration Continuum for Higher Education
Chapter 5
Mercedes M. Fisher
Today’s technology is delivering greater access of current information and knowledge for instructional use. The introduction of the Internet has... Sample PDF
Implementation Considerations for Instructional Design of Web-Based Learning Environments
Chapter 6
Dorothy Leflore
More and more universities are turning to Web-based instruction in order to accommodate a larger student population. Much of the coursework... Sample PDF
Theory Supporting Design Guidelines for Web-Based Instruction
Chapter 7
Jared Danielson, Barbara Lockee, John Burton
Several years ago a professor at a large research institution prepared to deliver her first on-line course. The activities had been planned... Sample PDF
ID and HCI: A Marriage of Necessity
Chapter 8
Deborah L. Lowther, Marshall G. Jones, Robert T. Plants
The potential impact of the World Wide Web (WWW) on our educational system is limitless. However, if our teachers do not possess the appropriate... Sample PDF
Preparing Tomorrow's Teachers to Use Web-Based Education
Chapter 9
Cleborne D. Maddux, Rhoda Cummings
There has been a recent explosion of interest in distance education. On college and university campuses, this interest owes much of its life and... Sample PDF
Developing Web Pages as Supplements to Traditional Courses
Chapter 10
Susan M. Miller, Kenneth L. Miller
The intended audiences for this chapter are (a) individuals who design and develop Web-based instruction in any setting (i.e., university faculty... Sample PDF
Theoretical and Practical Considerations in the Design of Web-Based Instruction
Chapter 11
Ron Oliver, Jan Herrington
Many writers argue for a place for the use the new educational technologies from the perspective of IT management (e.g., Holt & Thompson, 1998).... Sample PDF
Using Situated Learning as a Design Strategy for Web-Based Learning
Chapter 12
Kay A. Persichitte
Like many instructors in higher education, I have found myself increasingly pressed to respond to demands for courses delivered with alternative... Sample PDF
A Case Study of Lessons Learned for the Web-Based Educator
Chapter 13
Susan M. Powers, Sharon Guan
Distance learning is by no means a new phenomenon. However, new technologies provide a twist to distance learning that is making it grow and expand... Sample PDF
Examining the Range of Student Needs in the Design and Development of a Web-Based Course
Chapter 14
Patricia L. Rogers
As an instructional medium, computer-based hypermedia environments (e.g., Web sites or CD-ROM materials) enable distinct and enriched activities... Sample PDF
Layers of Navigation for Hypermedia Environments: Designing Instructional Web Sites
Chapter 15
Karen Smith-Gratto
In the brave new world of cyberlearning, we need to look back as well as forward to create the best learning environments for students. All fields... Sample PDF
Strengthening Learning on the Web: Programmed Instruction and Constructivism
Chapter 16
J. Micael Spector
There are now many educational research and technology projects reporting a variety of outcomes and lessons learned with regard to how to... Sample PDF
Designing Technology Enhanced Learning Environments
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