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Book Sections Year : 1996

Constructivism in the Collaboratory

Abstract

Great attention has been paid recently to the capabilities of computers to provide environments in which active learners can construct their own understanding through open-ended interaction. Yet discussion of constructivist learning environments has commonly focused on the learner as an individual, learning in isolation from other learners. For example, Perkins (1991) characterizes a learning environment as being composed of five facets: information banks, symbol pads, construction kits, phenomenaria, and task managers. Each of these is a valuable resource for an individual learner but none provides a means for a learner to interact with, influence, or be influenced by other learners. In our research, we start with a constructivist belief in the importance of an active learner interacting with a variety of resources, developing his or her own understanding through a mixture of experimentation, experience, and expert guidance. However, we supplement this constructivist outlook with a sociocultural commitment to the importance of communication and collaboration with other learners throughout the knowledge construction process. In this chapter, we describe a learning environment that we have developed that combines constructivist-inspired tools for open-ended investigation with communication and collaboration tools that support both expert guidance and multi-learner collaboration. We begin by presenting our rationale for this approach.
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Dates and versions

hal-00190597 , version 1 (23-11-2007)

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : hal-00190597 , version 1

Cite

Daniel C. Edelson, Roy D. Pea, Louis M. Gomez. Constructivism in the Collaboratory. Brent G. Wilson. Constructivist learning environments : case studies in instructional design, Educational Technology Publications,Inc., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey 07632, pp.151-164, 1996. ⟨hal-00190597⟩

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