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ERIC Number: EJ1050870
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Feb
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1042-1629
Visualizing Mental Models: Understanding Cognitive Change to Support Teaching and Learning of Multimedia Design and Development
McNeil, Sara
Educational Technology Research and Development, v63 n1 p73-96 Feb 2015
The use of advanced instructional design (ID) principles, especially those that include a collaborative authoring environment is becoming ever more critical in the successful workplace. Faculty in instructional technology programs who provide an environment that effectively nourishes these ID skills have a responsibility to continually evaluate and update their instructional methods to ensure that course goals are met. Using students' drawings of their expressed mental models as an assessment tool is one approach that helps evaluate teaching methods, determine what students have learned, and how they have conceptualized important concepts. In this study, teams of instructional technology graduate students in a two-semester, multimedia design and development course used an authoring program to create multimedia projects for real clients. This study examined the cognitive changes that occurred when these students were immersed in a technology-rich, collaborative environment. Comparison of students' visual representations of their mental models of multimedia design and development from the beginning and end of the course provided insight into conceptual changes that occurred in regards to the multimedia course, its goals, and the collaborative process. Analysis of students' drawings of their mental models indicated substantial transformations from linear, individualistic, and skills-based thinking to recursive, collaborative, and team-oriented concepts. This data provides evidence that the visual, graphic nature of mental models provides a coherent, fluid, and detailed representation of students' thinking, one that captures a level of richness that may be missing from essay methods, product assessment, or class evaluations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A