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Although Constructivism theorists do not entirely reject the use of different learning models of theories like behaviorism and cognitivism, as it states that learner’s new knowledge is built on prior experience, “there by combining pedagogies in a more idiosyncratic way. (Lax et al, 2004)” (as cited in UBC, 2015), however constructivism contest the behaviorist and cognitivist models as they are impersonal and decontextualized.
From the perspective of being a long life learner in computing field, during the development of a software, I personally find implementation phase most effective for me to learn, I experiment failure and success of the design done at earlier stage, I construct new knowledge based on my previous experience, reflect, question, discuss, listen, argue, collaborate with my peers, I believe doing is most effective way to learn in my field, though implementation phase of software development is the most stressful but experiencing it makes a learner a tough programmer that could code any problem no matter how complex it is, similarly constructivism makes “a learner from a passive listener and absorber of information to an individual who is out there to get something for himself, the twenty-first century requires such an individual” (UBC, 2015).
From the perspective of an adult educator, any programming educator need to endeavor learners to engage in critical thinking, solving and analyzing complex computational problems, having good communication skills and teamwork, and significant project experience, these are core characteristics required by ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) for computer science graduates (ACM, 2013), with the rapid advances within my field it is considerably important that students are independent learners to continuously educate themselves new technologies, Pursuing theory and thus pedagogy to promote all these skills, I find among that constructivism theory and constructivist experiential learning model fulfill all these requirements.
Finally as I teach in the online settings, I believe the context requires a learning approach that actively engage learners versus the traditional one-way televised learning that produces boredom (Huang, 2002), a lot of studies were made to integrate constructivist approach online, results were very promising and has shown that using an online constructivist model is effective, using constructivism is changing a lot of learners’ perceptions in regards of the online learning, and assists them to learn in a more collaborative, authentic and responsible way (Ruey, 2010).
- ACM. (2013). Computer Science Curricula 2013. Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) IEEE Computer Society. Retrieved from: http://acm.org
- Huang, H. (2002). Towards constructivism for adult learners in online learning environment. British Journal of Educational Technology, 33(1), 27-37. Retrieved from http://Umsl.edu
- Ruey, S. (2010). A case study of constructivist instructional strategies for adult online learning. British Journal of Educational Technology, 41(5), 706-720. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-x
- UBC, M. (2015, February 17). Constructivism for Adults. Educational Technology. Retrieved from http://etec.ctlt.ubc.ca/510wiki/Constructivism_for_Adults