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IST520 Learning Theory

Syllabus~ Spring 2015 Online Class

Nancy Lockwood, Ph.D. (best contact method)
Phone: 831 206-7086
By appointment

Course Description
This subject introduces learning theory as a foundation for the design of
learning technology interventions. Starting with a historical approach, this
subject will cover behavioral, cognitive, social, and biological theories of
learning, with their instructional implications. The role of this subject is to
provide both a support for the process of design and as grounding for
extensions to learning theory that occurs in your other classes. A brief
introduction to analysis of research will be included, as well as training on
using human subjects in research.

Learning Outcomes

Evaluate and apply appropriate learning theories: behavioral,

cognitive, social, etc.

Select appropriate pedagogy according to a specific delivery model

and learner outcomes

Develop an awareness of cultural diversity in learning traits

Understand yourself as a learner and apply that knowledge to your

own learning

Course resources
Texts - required
Gredler, M. E. (2009). Learning and Instruction, Theory into
Practice, 6th Edition. Pearson/Merrill Prentice Hall: New Jersey
Merriam, S.B. (Ed) (2008). Third Update on Adult Learning Theory:
New Directions for Adult and continuing Education. Jossey-Bass: San
Francisco. [Articles available online]
Merriam, S.B. (Ed) (2001). The New Update on Adult Learning
Theory: New Directions for Adult and continuing Education. Jossey-Bass:
San Francisco. [Articles available online]
Please note that these books have been ordered through the CSUMB
bookstore and are available through as well.
Optional Materials & Recommendations

Adult Learning: Linking Theory and Practice

Author(s): Sharan B. Merriam & Laura Bierema
ISBN: 978-1-118-13057-5
Note: This book is new for 2013. If you want it and have trouble
finding it let me know.

The Profession and Practice of Adult Education: An Introduction

Author(s): Sharan Merriam & Ralph Brockett
ISBN: 9780470181539

Scaffolding Childrens Learning: Vygotsky and Early Childhood

Author(s): Laura Berk & Adam Winsler
ISBN: 0-935989-68-4

How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School (Expanded

Author: National Research Council
ISBN: 0-309-07036-8

The Adult Learner: The Definitive Classic in Adult Education and

Human Resource Development (6th Edition)
Author(s): Malcolm Knowles, Elwood Holton III, Richard Swanson
ISBN: 978-0-7506-7837-7

Additional articles will be made available in pdf or as links on iLearn.

Structure of course
Each week there will be readings with related activities. These activities
will be in the form of forums and weekly journals. In addition you will be
required to complete a critical analysis of a journal article and complete a
final paper designed to explore the implications of the learning theories
you believe in and for their application to learning problems. Also, you are
required to complete a training course in how to conduct Human Subjects

You will be assessed on all work that you do for this class, which means
that everything you do during this course results in points earned. There
is no extra credit designed for this course. If you keep up with and
complete all activities and assignments with quality and thoughtfulness,
you will receive the assigned points according to the grading criteria.
Points will be posted on iLearn for each individual assessment method.
There are a total of 500 points possible in the course based on the
following breakdown:

Weekly forums @10pts ea
Weekly journal writing @10pts ea
Critical analysis paper
Human Subjects Research training
Final paper



Grade Breakdown






Fewer than 350 points

will result in an F for
the class

I reserve the right to make changes to the syllabus, grading criteria, or
assignments; students will receive notification of any changes made via
Late Work
Specifications for each assignment will be given in the course
management system (iLearn),

Assignments are due no later than 11:59 p.m. PST on the specified date.
If an assignment due date cannot be met, notify me prior to the due
date. See more information below. You are responsible for turning in work
on time, as posted. Any assignment/activity not received by the due
date and time will be considered late and a reduction of total points will
be enforced at the rate of 5% for not turning in the assignment by 11:59
pm PST on the due date. After that, a reduction of 10% will occur for
every day it is late.

Sometimes personal situations will arise and, on occasion, students may

not be able to meet assignment deadlines. Should that occur, students
are required to contact me as soon as possible, ideally prior to the
deadline itself. Some reasons will be accepted, such as military
deployment or illness, but others, such as family vacation, will not. With
the exception of fully documented medical (or similar) reasons, the
decision to accept late work is at my sole discretion.

If I agree to an extension, you and I must formalize (in writing) an

adjusted deadline schedule. Please note that turning in missed
assignments at the end of the semester will probably not be acceptable to
me - plan accordingly. Additionally, if the adjusted deadlines are not met,
points may be deducted or the assignment may not be accepted.
Any assignments turned in after the original due date will be graded at
my convenience. That could mean that the late assignment may not be
graded until the end of the semester. Because an exception has been
made for you, I will not be held to the grading timeline established in the

class syllabus. This should not be considered as an unwillingness to

provide feedback in a timely manner - just recognition that I have a
limited amount of time for grading, and it is inappropriate to expect that
work submitted late will be prioritized over work submitted on time.

One major channel is the Ask your Instructor board. I will respond to
questions there. In addition, I will post group announcements in iLearn to
communicate with the group at large.
Another major channel is to email me directly. Please allow 48 hours for a
response time.

Every attempt is made to respond to your work within a timely manner
(within two weeks after the work has been submitted). It is your
responsibility to review my feedback. If any feedback is unclear or youd
like further guidance, please feel free to contact me via MyCSUMB.
Although this in an online course and we would all like to believe that I
am always available , what I can offer is an average of 6 days per week
availability. This means that for one day each week you may have to wait
a 24-hour period for me to respond to you. I do make every effort to
monitor the website in the morning hours and again in the late afternoon
hours with sporadic visits in between and again in the evening, during
those six days.

Shared Responsibilities
I commit to conscientiously designing a structured learning experience, to
provide feedback on the assignments in a timely manner, and to make
myself available in several ways for further discussion.
Understand that I can only create an environment conducive to learning,
and suggest that if you participate in the designed activities you can learn
from the experience.
I expect you to complete the assignments as scheduled, abide by the
following policies, and ask questions if you dont understand. Ill also
expect your collaboration with fellow students as indicated below.

Academic Honesty
Academic honesty is highly valued at CSUMB. You must always submit
work that represents your original words or ideas. If any words or ideas
used in a class, posting, or assignment submission do not represent your
original words or ideas, you must cite all relevant sources and make clear
the extent to which such sources were used. Words or ideas that require
citation include, but are not limited to, all hard copy or electronic
publications, whether copyrighted or not, and all verbal or visual
communication when the content of such communication clearly
originates from an identifiable source.
As a student, the academic institution assumes that you are in school to
use other more learned and experienced "authorities" as a source of
knowledge and to guide your reflection. The author of the course
materials; the author of an article found on the Internet or CSUMB
Library; other sources that you find through research; and even class
lectures, are all suitable authorities. So, you have to collect facts and
opinions from the authorities, and then you must give them credit. If you
make a statement of fact or include a statistic, the source of the
information must be indicated with an in-text citation and reference
listing at the end.
Within the SMART College, plagiarism and other forms of academic
dishonesty are not tolerated. Students who are found by faculty to have
committed plagiarism in an assignment will, at minimum, upon the first
offense fail that assignment. Upon the second offense, a student will, at
minimum, fail the class. Each incident and the student's name will be
reported to the college administration.
Please see the CSUMB Catalog for more information about academic
honesty, including consequences of academic dishonesty. Please use APA
format (see:
doc_id=796 ) for your citations.

Collaboration is a powerful learning tool and working together can be
enjoyable as well as productive. However, there are limits on whats
allowed, as the Honesty policy implies.
You can talk about the ideas, and of course your contributions to the
Discussion board are shared. Any specific group work is also to be jointly

developed and shared. However, your individual work has to be just that.
In addition to citing your references, you are also expected to represent
through your own words and efforts your final understanding. You can
develop that understanding collaboratively, but you must represent it
yourself. This specifically means using your own words, and not just
rephrasing other work (at least not without attribution). The individual
assignments require your thought and your expression.

CSUMB and the MIST program are diverse in many ways. All students are
required to show respect to their fellow students and to the instructor.
While you may not necessarily agree with their beliefs, you are required
to respect that they have them. We encourage you to share and embrace
the multiculturalism of the CSUMB vision statement.

It is a goal of the program for you all to have equitable access to
succeeding in this course. Students with disabilities who require
accommodations such as time extension or test accommodations must
present verification from Student Disability Resources within the first two
weeks of class. If you think a disability may impact your performance in
this class, please contact me before the end of the Add/Drop period. You
can and should also contact:
Building 47, Student Services, First Floor
Phone: 831/582-3672 voice, or 582-4024 fax/TTY