Teaching & Learning Process

Introduction

As teachers we tend to think that teaching is all about teachers and our role; in fact the most important aspects of the educational process are the students and what they learn.’ This leads us to consider what we mean by 'learning'. As you read the educational literature and, more specifically, educational psychology, you find many differences in theories and definitions.

Concept of Learning:-

Learning is about a change: the change brought about by developing a new skill, understanding a scientific law, changing an attitude. The change is not merely incidental or natural in the way that our appearance changes as we get older. Learning is a relatively permanent change, usually brought about intentionally. When we attend a course, search through a book, or read a discussion paper, we set out to learn! Other learning can take place without planning, for example by experience. Generally with all learning there is an element within us of wishing to remember and understand why something happens and to do it better next time.

Learning Models:
We are often faced with questions such as : Why use models? How to teach? How student Learn? Answer comes from experience of many people over many years in form of Models. Such Models can be used by any teacher depending on context. Example: Pedagogical Vs Andragogical Models. Pedagogical approach teacher dominated learning situation - Students rather passive. Andragogical approach - emphasis on what the learner is doing - how adults learn.
Adult Expectations (Learning Needs):
Some of the common adult expectations are :
• Adults expect to be taught.
• Adult students expect to have to work hard.
• Adult student expectation is that the work is related to the vocation.
• Adult student’s expectation is that they expect to be treated as adults.
Each of these four expectations although stated in general terms needs to be interpreted as individual needs.
Few Learning Model principles:
the process should be focused on the student’s current experience,
it recognizes the adult nature of the learner by according responsibility for what is learned, and how, and
the learning can take place in a variety of contexts.
The suggestion was that the learning process should be considered in three phases; first, the student’s experience needs to be followed by, secondly, some organized reflection. This reflection ensures that the student learns from the experience and also helps, thirdly, to identify any need for some specific learning before further experience is acquired.
Concept of Teaching:-
Teaching is a set of events, outside the learners which are designed to support internal process of learning. Teaching (Instruction) is outside the learner. Learning is internal to learners. You cannot motivate others if you are not self-motivated. Motives are not seen, but, Behaviors are seen. Is learning a motive or behavior? Learning is both a motive and behavior but only behavior is seen, learning is internal, performance is external.
Generally , the role of teacher can be categorized into: Traditional Role - Teacher Centered Modern Role - Facilitator (Student Centered) There has been a change from the Traditional role to the Modern role in the present context. The learning increases when the teacher builds on the previous experience of the student. However, individual’s learning differs and each individual learns at his or her own pace. Identifying the slow learners and individual attention of the teacher may be required. Thus, effective learning is to a great extent based on experiences. Direct experiences are student centered and participation in problem solving. While in indirect experience, the contents are carefully designed and organized by teacher. Basic Teaching Model: Objectives are intended learning outcomes written down before the process of instruction. General Objectives - Statement of instructional intent - student ability in general terms. Specific objective statement of instructional intent- student ability in terms of specific & observable. Usefulness of objectives, Elements of objectives, Terminal behavior Condition, and Criterion / Criteria. Writers tend to separate learning into three main groups or domains. These are the psychomotor, cognitive and affective domains. Those skills, which are concerned with 4 physical dexterity, for example changing a wheel and giving an injection, fall into the psychomotor domain. Both of the tasks do need knowledge but, predominantly they are physical skills, which need practice. Knowledge and knowing the 'how' and the 'why', the thinking skills, fall into the cognitive domain. Examples include 'stating the names of the major bones in the body', 'explaining why we have tides'. Both of these require thought processes to be accomplished. The third domain, and one we often neglect, is the affective domain. This is concerned with attitudes. Examples in this domain include 'the need to eat a healthy, balanced diet', 'the need for equality of opportunity for all', and 'politeness'. These deal with feelings and emotions and are different from the examples in the other domains. Affective Learning occurs when these three domains are seen as interdependent. Each of these domains should be developed as part of teaching/ learning session. Teachers should be able to define learning objectives in each of them. Learning in these three domains often needs different teaching and learning approaches. They are often considered in isolation but in practice learning may occur simultaneously in all three.