MICRO AND MASTERY LEARNING. BITE-SIZED CONTENT FOR DEEPER AND WIDER KNOWLEDGE
, C. Ruiz
Higher Education and Technology Institute of Monterrey (MEXICO)
Hyperconnectivity has induced millennials to be quick in action and multi-tasking, which makes them look for fast and unpatient options (Sharma, 2016). This motivates learning resources for this generation to be short-lived - so they can be easily digested. Millennials find little contribution from formal education to a real retention of knowledge (they argue that memorization for an exam is quickly forgotten). They appreciate context more than content and look for more informal and "just in time" resources to acquire and assimilate knowledge. In addition to its short attention span, they have easy access to information through search engines and social networks, which make it accessible in real time.
Microlearning is the delivery of learning content in short-term formats (Torgeson, 2016). A microclass normally comprises a short exposure, a demonstration or a narrated presentation (Sweet, 2014). The microlearning strategy divides the learning process into small segments that must be constructed and organized using the principles of brain functioning (Grovo, s.f.). That is, it is a strategy that not only responds to the way we naturally learn, but also, is a scheme that is able to compete with the increasingly growing and diverse demands of our attention (Microlearning, 2015 ).
The benefits that have been found when using microlearning have been that they easily capture the attention of users, motivate action, combat boredom, promote a state of alertness and energy in people, expand the capacity of short term memory, attends to all learning styles (auditory, visual, kinesthetic and tactile), avoids mental waste, promotes resources to be consulted repeatedly, to respond immediately to the challenges of situations faced by individuals and they convert into customized resources on demand of the user (Grovo, sf).
The mastery learning strategy is rooted in Bloom's theory (Guskey, 2010), who claimed that despite differences in learning styles and modalities, all students can achieve high levels of knowledge acquisition if they are provided with sufficient time and appropriate learning conditions, through processes of tutoring and personalized instruction, having as pillars the evaluation for learning and feedback.
The design of a strategy that amalgamates both pedagogical approaches is presented as a solution to the difficulty of capturing the attention of the student during the classes due to the short periods of concentration they present and to decrease the heterogeneity in levels of acquisition of disciplinary knowledge derived from the differences in learning styles and modalities among students belonging to the same group.