Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Development of Critical Thinking Skills in Distance Education

Hello Community Members and Dr. Powley,

Thank you for your patience and support regarding some unexcepted circumstances last week and this week. I have embeded my video below for your comments and recommendations. Again,thank you.

Michele Baylor

Monday, November 8, 2010

WK9: Concept Map: Static Versus Dynamic Technologies

Concept Map for Technology and Media for Distance Education

In teaching and developing online courses, there are many technologies that can be used to facilitate learning.  Moller (2008) suggested that as an instructor or instructional designer makes decisions regarding the technology to use in order to support knowledge building and to achieve specific learning outcomes.  For example, if an instructor selects a static technology, little is performed in assisting a learner to build on his/her knowledge.  Instead, static technologies provide learners with the opportunity to capture information.  Further, static technologies are popular because they copy the face-to-face classroom or teacher-led instruction.  Based on these findings, I have concluded that I am in the middle of the continuum.  Through the continuous use of wikis, blogs, discussion boards, chats, and other similar and new technological approaches at Walden University, I will be moving closer towards the dynamic end of the interactivity that includes:  a) virtual simulations and gaming, b) multi-user environments, and c) mindtools.  These technologies will assist me in developing a precise, clearer, and deeper cognitive level. Further, mind tools are computer applications that, when used by learners to represent what they know, which in turn engage them in critical thinking about the content they are studying (Jonassen, 1996).  For instance, using databases to organize students’ understanding of content organization necessarily engages them in analytical reasoning, where creating an expert system rule base requires them to think about the causal relationships between ideas.  Therefore, students cannot use mindtools as learning strategies without thinking deeply about what they are studying.

Jonassen, D.H., Carr, C., & Yueh, H.  (1998).  Computers as mindtools for engaging learners in critical thinking.  TechTrends.  43(2), 24-32. 
Moller, L. (2008).  Static and dynamic technologies.  Unpublished.  Laureate Education, Inc.  Retrieved from

 Baylor, Michele