Symposium on Information Theory at MIT
(September 10-12, 1959).
Newell & Simon, Chomsky, Miller, Bruner, and
many others (see Gardner, 1987, p.28)
“Behaviorism spoke to many needs in the
scientific community, including some that
were quite legitimate . . . Yet, in retrospect,
the price paid by strict adherence to
behaviorism was far too dear (Gardner, 1987,
“I [Bruner] think it should be clear to you
by now that we were not out to “reform”
behaviorism, but to replace it. As my
colleague George Miller put it some
years later, ‘We nailed our new credo to
the door, and waited to see what would
happen. All went very well, so well, in
fact that we may have been victims of
our success” (Bruner, 1990, p. 4).
De-emphasis on affect, context, culture,
Belief in interdisciplinary studies
Rooted in classical philosophical
problems (Gardner, 1987)
model of cognition
Stages of Information
Auditory longer than visual
Process and select info while ignoring
Process and select info while ignoring
Meaning it holds for learner
Similarity with other tasks
Ability to control attention – differences by
age, hyperactivity, intelligence, and LD
Template matching – mental copies (what’s the
problem with this?)
Gestalt principles – what we do when things fail to
resemble their prototype
Short term (15-30 seconds without
Encoding – how do you do it?
Getting the information from WM to LTM
Provide organized information
Arrange extensive and variable practice
Use strategies for encoding
Enhance self-control of information
processing (Metacognition – more on
Strength of memory trace
Encoding specificity – influence of the
context of encoding
Failure to encode
Failure to retrieve
Retroactive (later learning interferes with
previously learned material)
Proactive (previous learning interferes with
later learning and is related to the amount
of practice on the original task)
What’s a concept map?
A way to organize concept words and
How are they used?
Inspiration is a tool for creating concept
maps – but you can do them by hand!
Create a concept map
Episodic ? Semantic
(personal experience) (general knowledge)
Dual code models
Visual/verbal – 2 systems of memory
NOTE: Working memory
Baddley model - Phonological and visual
Building blocks of
Note: Hand out cards
It’s a “thing” that Examples
“we” have classified. Apple
Classified by Red
Smallest unit of meaning that can stand
as a separate assertion.
Judge as true or false
Relationship between two concepts.
Apples are red.
Apples are green.
Green apples are sour.
What do the blocks
Semantic Networks Productions
Neural Networks Scripts
What are they and what do they “look” like????
Nodes have meaning
May show hierarchical relationships
Learning – building the network
ANIM AL has Skin
is a is a
Wings has BIRD FISH
is a is a
can is cannot is
Sing Yellow Fly Tall
1.5 A canary
Response time (sec)
A canary has skin
A canary can fly
1.3 A canary is
1.2 A canary is an animal
A canary is
"Complexity" of sentence
(gaining complexity to right)
Rote versus Meaningful
Reception versus Discovery
Meaningful Reception Learning
Hierarchical, integrated body of
Learning – gaining the cognitive
Processes of meaningful learning
Derivative (illustrate the concept – e.g., examples of
different types of dogs)
Correlative (elaboration, extension, or modification of
previously learned concept).
Superordinate – new inclusive proposition or
concept under which established ideas are
Combinatorial – new idea not related in a specific
sense, but is generally relevant to the broad
Connectionism (recall GCR)
Parallel distributed processing
The nodes don’t mean anything – connections are
Activation pattern carries the “meaning”
Learning via strengthening/weakening
Processes: Spreading activation
networks Output layer
Forward Input Units
From Luger & Stubblefield (1993, p. 524)
If the apple is red, then it is good for eating.
If the apple has a worm, then don’t eat it!
Is ordinarily implicit memory (typically
not conscious thought)
Production systems – developed via
declarative, then procedural knowledge.
IF the engine is getting gas, and
the engine will turn over,
THEN the problem is spark plugs.
IF the engine does not turn over, and the
lights do not come on
THEN the problem is battery or cables.
IF the engine does not turn over, and
the light do come on
THEN the problem is the starter motor.
From Luger & Stubblefield (1993)
ACT - R
Comprehensive network model of memory
Propositions (subject + predicate)
Declarative knowledge (initially – schemalike
Procedural knowledge (later - productions)
Working memory – where declarative K. is
Learning – gaining these propositions
Strengthening (frequently used, stored close)
Abstract descriptions of things/events
Top-down processing – a means to use
Bottom-up processing – building/tweaking
Learning – development of a schema
Initial research – reading schema
Who: Mom, daycare teacher . . .
Where: couch, on floor
When: bedtime, circle time
Actions: hold book, turn pages . . .
Experientially oriented (episodic
Based in Artificial intelligence
Use scripts to understand situations
through social contact
Used with typical/logical/routine
Where: doctor office
Actors: patients, doctors, nurses . . .
How to: sit on exam table . . .
Props: medical equipment . . .
Scene: waiting room . . .
Mental, built on the fly
Humans represent the world they are interacting with
through mental models.
Are schemata +
Represent knowledge and
Include perceptions about task demands and task
Used to direct behavior
Tend to be incomplete
Have little control over them
Unstable, change over time
“In order to understand a real-world phenomenon, a
person has to hold what Johnson-Laird (1983) describes
as a working model of the phenomenon in his or her mind.
Mental models are not imitations of real-world
phenomena, they are simpler.”
“A mental model which explains all aspects of the
phenomenon that a person interacts with is an appropriate
one. In order to provide explanation, it has to have a
similar structure to the phenomenon it represents; it is this
similarity in structure which enables the holder of the
model to make mental inferences about the phenomenon
which hold true in the real world.”
“A structural analogy of the world”
How do you know what a learner’s
mental model is?
Ask them for an explanation
Ask them to make predictions
Ask them to teach another student
Activate prior knowledge
Advance organizers (Ausubel)
Comparative organizers and elaboration
Conceptual/Mental models (often teacher
Other strategies (for learner and instructor)?
Consider your concept maps
Novice and Experts
Experts excel mainly in their domain
Have superior short-term memory for material in their
domain – why is this, given that their memory capacity does
not change? Perceive large meaningful patterns in their
Are fast – and generally solve problems with less errors than
Spend more time analyzing the problem qualitatively
See and represent problems in their domain in a deeper
Have strong self-monitoring skills.
Have been lots of expert-novice comparisons.
Teachers – have different understandings of
viewed classroom situations. Would focus on
different thing (expert – both visual and verbal,
whereas novice mainly visual). Experts more
likely explain than just describe. Planned much
more for long term action, and much of the
planning was done in the context of teaching.
Novices had less extensive teaching schemata.
Planning took much more time for novices. Expert
teachers could improvise.
May mean different things to different
“One’s awareness of thinking and the
self-regulatory behavior” that
accompanies this awareness” (Driscoll,
In a nut shell, knowing what you know,
knowing when you know, and knowing
what you need to know.
“The executive” in many theories of memory.
Predicting, checking, monitoring, reality
testing, coordination and control of deliberate
attempts to study, learn, or solve problems
Use of study time
Estimating readiness for test
MC enhancing processes can be taught
(when appropriate depending on age of
What is the role of age?
Different instructional content
Ways to encode, store, and retrieve
Limitations of standard instructional
Emphasis on direct instruction
Lack of on-line diagnosis
Basic skills before understanding
E.g., Overemphasis on decoding results in lack
of comprehension skills
Emphasis on subskills
Skills practiced in isolation
Absence of explicit strategy instruction
Differential treatment effect
Cumulated and more pronounced for
Form of guided cooperative learning
Passing of responsibility to students through
a well-defined process
Predicting – hypothesize what the author will say
next in the text.
Question generating – identify the kind of things
that make for a good question
Summarizing – integrate information
Clarifying – Clarify unclear vocabulary, referent
words, and complicated concepts.
Explain the strategies the students will be using, why they
are learning them, and where they will be able to use
them (helpful situations), and how they will learn the
Then give instruction on the four strategies (only one day
on these two points)
Model the strategies
Use guided practice in which more responsibility is given
for the students to be the teacher.
Use teacher judgment to determine when more modeling
and instruction is needed.