Jacqueline Wong, student Human Learning and Performance
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 learning effective? How can instructions be designed to help students remember the information better or to comprehend the information better?
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. For example, students should be provided with practices to become better problem-solvers. However, what kind of practices and how the practices should be provided are less clear. To further develop myself professionally, I enrolled in the Psychology of Human Learning and Performance Master’s program at the Erasmus University Rotterdam.
The courses were taught using bite-sized lectures and problem-based learning. I think one of the course’s strengths would be the problem-based learning approach. We had to discuss the scientific literature that we have read and critically examine the evidence provided. Instead of taking the information we read at face value, we weighed the evidence and derived at a better understanding of the subject matter. It was soon clear to me that I have become more confident of what I have learned over time.
Other than getting acquainted with influential theories of learning, I am also glad that the program has a strong emphasis on transforming theoretical knowledge into practice. 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. Furthermore, we had the chance to conduct small-scale research to examine a topic of interest.
The program did not disappoint as I was able to develop myself both professionally and as an individual. It turns out that instead of providing practices, students who are just starting out would benefit more from worked examples. Not only did the course satisfied my curiosity for learning, it left me wanting to learn more. In my opinion, completing the program is not the end, but just the beginning for me!