The opportunity to develop recommendations for educators that can be implemented in schools is useful as it helped me to reflect on my own practice.
How does one learn best? Is inquiry based learning effective? How can instructions be designed to help students remember the information better or to improve their comprehension of the information?
As a classroom teacher, I often ponder over such questions in order to improve my teaching practices. Although there is a wide range of information offered online, the information can be confusing. Therefore, students should be provided with practices to become better problem-solvers. However, the question is: what kind of practices? Furthermore, it is less clear how the practices should be provided. To further develop myself professionally, I enrolled in the Psychology of Human Learning and Performance Master’s programme at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
The courses were taught using bite-sized lectures and the method of problem-based learning. I think one of the course’s strengths would be the problem-based learning approach. We discussed the scientific literature that we had read and critically examined the evidence provided. Instead of taking the information we had read at face value, we weighed the evidence and arrived at a better understanding of the subject matter. I have become more confident of what I have learned over time.
In addition to the familiarising ourselves with influential theories of learning, I am glad that the programme learned us how theoretical knowledge can be transformed into practice. The programme learns you how to develop recommendations for educators that can be implemented in schools. This is useful as it helped me to reflect on my own practice. Furthermore, we have had the chance to conduct small-scale research to examine a topic of interest.
The programme has not disappointed me. I was able to develop myself both on a professional level and on a personal level. It turns out that instead of providing practices, students who are just starting out would benefit more from the worked –example effect. The Master’s programme has satisfied my curiosity to learn. Moreover, it left me with the wish to learn more. In my opinion, the completion of the programme will not be the end, but merely the beginning of a new period of learning in my life!