RESEARCH ON THE IMPACT OF INTEGRATING TEACHING AND LEARNING CONSTRUCTIVIST PRINCIPLES IN THE EDUCATIONAL PROCESS
The article examines the main principles used in the methodology of teaching in the field of Information Technology in the Master's course in Informatics and Information Technologies in Education. It includes two stages:
1) a preliminary one in which the design of the syllabus is being carried out, and
2) conducting of a learning process, including the defining of teaching methods and tools.
The main task of a successful lecturer is decision making. This is related to three teaching strategies: planning, teaching and evaluation. Each one requires specific skills:
- Planning - identifying the learners' need for learning, setting basic and specific goals, defining the most appropriate activities to achieve these goals;
- Teaching - the methods of presenting the content, explanations, listening, presentation of new materials, demonstrations, discussions and round ups;
- Evaluation - setting teaching objectives to be evaluated, identifying the information to be evaluated, gathering information, reporting and commenting.
Methodology of teaching applying the principles of Constructivism
Over the last few decades, in the field of education, there has been a significant change in the way human learning is perceived and in the conditions that best support it. More and more teachers are turning their attention to Constructivist models of learning.
By using the Constructivist approach, lecturers strive to apply teaching techniques through which students construct their understanding. Teachers need to create concepts and phenomena that are interesting and important for learners. The teacher has to offer different methods of study and provide diverse learning approaches.
Throughout the learning process the focus is on:
1) Boosting learning activities by using a system of selected Constructivist principles;
2) Introducing conceptual maps as a Constructivist means of teaching and learning;
3) Applying information and communication technologies as innovative educational tools contributing to better quality of education
There are nine basic Constructivist principles that are observed in the discipline under consideration:
1. The learner has an active role in implementing and managing learning - the proposed learning activities suggest problem solving
2. Emphasis is placed on constructing rather than reproducing knowledge.
3. The construction of knowledge takes place in a personalized context and through social co-ordination, interaction, collaboration and experience.
4. Preliminary knowledge of students can help or hinder learning, so this is taken into account in the constructing and teaching process.
5. The way students organize their knowledge has an impact on their learning and on implementing acquired knowledge.
6. Motivation determines and guides the activities learners carry out for learning purposes.
7. To achieve perfection in knowledge, students have to master component skills which they will use in practice and to know when and how to apply the lessons learned.
8. Learning based on a specific goal combined with targeted feedback improves the quality of student learning.
9. To achieve self-directed learning, students should be able to manage and adapt their own approaches.