A lot of research has been done on instructional techniques to teach concepts. Studies show that concepts comprise of four components: Definition, Examples, Non-Examples and Analogies. Let’s understand each of these in detail and how you can apply this knowledge in developing instructionally sound eLearning courses.
1. Definition: A definition is a statement of the critical features of a concept. In terms of defining technical terms, you will face some challenges because to put technical terms in statement format is very difficult because it leads to the difficulty of defining terms. Now, if you defined any terms, it doesn’t mean that learner will be able to identify that part or object that you are defining, either because the definition itself doesn’t show or encourage the learner to identify the object. Shows an example that make the learner identify the object.
2. Examples: An example is the real instance of the concept that makes your definition concrete enough to support it with examples. For concrete concepts, it’s best to use pictures, and for abstract concepts, you can use formal words like integrity, goal, etc. Though there is no visual representation of an example, it is still a concept.
3. Non-Examples: A non-example is also a real instance of the concept where it is closely related but could be confused with the concept. Suppose you are teaching a concept of a dog, your non-example would be a cat because a cat also has the same features of a dog but it varies. So, you would have to define an example and a non-example and explain why a non-example does not explain the concept that you are teaching.
4. Analogy: An analogy is a representation of a concept that corresponds with it in function or form but which is otherwise dissimilar. Remember in our primary school we had mathematics class with chocolate, apples and with fractions like one half and one fourth? So, apples and mathematics do not relate at all but our teachers were using an apple as a subject to teach us. This is an analogy. This is because the mentor wants the learner to relate unrelated things to all those that he knows. Analogies, therefore, make the learning more effective but in such a way that you relate to what the learner knows already. Don’t show them something unrelated and ask them to learn. Instead, show them something they know and make them relate the concept that you want to teach.
Thus while teaching concepts it is very important that from the above four components, you need to include at least Definition and Examples. You may or may not want to include the remaining two.
Subscribe to Our eLearning Design Blogs
Get CommLab's latest eLearning articles straight to your inbox. Enter your email address below:
Introducing new processes and software applications can be quite a daunting task. Employees are not receptive to change and teaching all the details and minute steps can be time consuming. Conducting classroom sessions might not be a very beneficial solution. Learners will need to set aside time from their busy schedules, and often, this might not be feasible. The limited number of facilitators will also slow down the learning process. Facilitators will also need to travel extensively to teach learners spread all across the globe. All these arrangements take up considerable efforts, time and financial resources.
I would like to pick your brains with a quick question on compliance assessment.
In your experience with assessing compliance topics, is it OK to let learners keep repeating a quiz until they achieve 100%?
The mining industry plays a key role in the Australian economy. According to a report published by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Government of Victoria, in 2013, mineral and energy commodities account for 60% of the nation’s total exports.
In this blog, I wish to share my experience on how I developed an interesting course though it had technical content.
This course on finance was a challenge for a non-financial person like me. Initially, it panicked me as I have no idea about finance. But, as an instructional designer, my approach towards this project was more on “educating not teaching”. For this, I did a lot of content comprehension to educate myself before I educate others. We will now see how I faced this challenge and accomplished my goal.
We still remember things that we have learned during our childhood. We remember many incidents that happened long ago. But, there are some instances where we don’t remember things. This,most probably, happens during education. Being a human being, it’s quite natural to forget things.
When you google the words ‘eLearning vendor’, you will come across many websites. Each website contains a lot of information, and sometimes, it may be misleading. Moreover, you might be busy or have no time to go through all the content to check the credibility of the vendor.
When most of us think about product training, we tend to think about the training programs provided for sales people to stay ahead of competitors. But, this type of training is given not only to sales people, but also to other audiences who need product training. Firstly, it should be provided to technicians to equip them with knowledge of every part of a product and its working. This helps them provide better service and ensure customer satisfaction. Another important audience who should be trained on your products is customers. A good training program provides the basic knowledge of your products, their usage and benefits, which goes a long way in building loyal customers.
Welcome to today’s blog post. Most of the articles, blogs and eLearning companies today portray an impression that the working domain of instructional designers is limited to eLearning. This is not true. The instructional design concept came into existence even before the invention of personal computers. E-learning or the educational technology uses the instructional design principles to enable superior understanding and enhanced learning experiences. Now that most of the training institutions have moved on to digital classrooms globally, I would like share some ideas on instructional designing for technology-enabled classroom training. These ideas will be applicable even in a traditional Instructor-led Training (ILT) program except that the supporting documents will be hard copies and not digital.
An online learning community (OLC) is a web-based learning environment with the latest digital technologies, where interconnected learning participants communicate, construct their knowledge collaboratively and share their personal experiences (Palloff & Pratt, 1999; Preece, 2000; Richardson, 2006).
As an eLearning professional, you need to struggle hard to meet your learners’ expectations from an eLearning course. The moment you know your learners and their expectations, you are sure to provide them with an effective eLearning course. Remember, your learners want to take the course for improving their performance and not just for the sake of taking the course. For this, you need to know what your learners actually want from the course. Here are a few things.