IDT520 Reflection

Strengths

*Think logically and analytically

*See connections between different theories

*Life experiences/older

*Able to be both creative and analytical

*Hard worker

*Research well and thoroughly

*Artist

*Military experience

*Generally the same age or older than my instructors (so far)

*Comfortable and knowledgeable about technology

Weaknesses

*APA formatting, including but not limited to: in-text citations, reference citations, capitalization, and punctuation proofreading & grammar

*Busy, lack of time, often rush at the end of assignments with best of intentions at the beginning of the week

*Lack of patience with ‘fluff’ assignments, want to focus on course specific material

*Sometimes viewed as arrogant

*Cluttered/disorganized work space

*Stubborn

Opportunities

*Continuing this Master’s degree program

*Using my knowledge and past experiences with virtual & augmented reality

*Have extensive art knowledge that should help with future classes

*The knowledge I’m gaining is directly relatable to current job and will put me in a position for promotion

*Finishing the degree program will allow me to get a job as an instructional designer at a medical college, immersed in the information I need to know to pass my MCAT’s and become a doctor

*Most people at my work spend more time watching YouTube videos or being sociable than working, I have a reputation for being a miracle worker and getting things done quickly

Threats

*Any large project at work that requires overtime will affect my ability to really focus on my school work – really anything that would shift my time, even sickness

*Lower grades, points taken off because of lack of proofreading and proper APA formatting, not because of lack or quality of content

*More ‘fluff’ assignments

*Considering competition is in the degree program, the other students are probably able to consistently devote more time and attention to their school work

*Considering competition is at work, I am considered to be ‘outside’ of my co-workers due to my age and experience, they are still young and silly, the competition is in the networking they do daily with each other

I gained a lot of knowledge, which was enjoyable, in this class. I came in as a blank slate, I didn’t know anything about learning or engagement methods and strategies, other than what the military taught me and that does not translate well to instructional design. I am comfortable saying that as this course comes to a close that have accomplished the outcomes listed in the Course Description and Course Outcomes specific to instructional design. Many of the theories I researched work hand in hand or often overlap each other from different perspectives. I can successfully describe some theories and learning styles as well as different strategies to engage learners across various mediums and benefited from collaboration with my fellow students. The adding exercise last week was particularly engaging as it forced me to continue looking beyond what the original poster had chosen to research.

My biggest concern during this class was that the strategies I did not choose to research. The teaching approach taken was very effective, moderately annoying at times, but effective. During my research for the Bridging Our Future, Using technology to engage learners blog post I found and referenced the constructivist approach written about by Driscoll (2018) in Reiser and Dempsey’s Trends and Issues in Instructional Design and Technology (4th ed., p. 63) where the instructor lets the students take the lead, learning primarily by discussion and projects . As I read the outline for this approach, I immediately recognized this teaching style as the primary approach our instructor had chosen to follow. However, as I continued reading, many of the frustrations I was experiencing but had not been able to fully identify or articulate were listed as potential issues common to this approach including student frustration and a sense of disorientation with having a lack of knowledge going in and spending time doing unnecessary research, only starting to gain knowledge towards the end of the course. Due to the short length of time allotted to each of these classes, perhaps a modified approach would best be served where a list of specific theories and strategies are identified is presented to the students as a clear expectation of knowledge areas to focus on with one or two not on the list to be included at the interest of each student. Because of how I researched, using key words, I am not even aware of how many other learning strategies there are that I did not choose, much less any information about them. Each of us is walking away from this class with knowledge we choose to research, not a standardized amount of information. When I start as an instructional designer at a medical school, they will presume that I have a basic knowledge of learning strategies for various mediums and I fear I only have partial knowledge. I would have preferred to have a list of strategies I was going to learn about and then done a version of the constructivist approach from that. I think this would have made the class less aggravating and more engaging, that I could be confident I was accomplishing everything I need to know to be a good instructional designer.

All that being said, I did learn quite a bit and have started to see the different learning styles and approaches all around me, even in how we interact with each other in daily life. I have started to apply some of these concepts to teaching my 3 year old son, he is showing tendencies of being a kinesthetic learner and I wish I had known what that was when my other children were still at home so I could of worked with them instead of trying to force more traditional teaching methods on them.

Some of the learning engagement strategies like media, games, and interactive technologies I came into the class very familiar with the application of. It was interesting to read the theories behind why I have been creating the content I have been creating for years. This confirmed to me that I want to continue using my strengths and skills for my capstone research project.

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