Following a Design-based Research Cycle

In this post, I present an overview of a DBR process using Nelson et al.’s Design-based Research Strategies for Developing a Scientific Inquiry Curriculum in a Multi-User Virtual Environment and explain the issues and implications with the work. Image from Investigating the Impact of Individualized, Reflective Guidance on Student Learning in an Educational Multi-User Virtual Environment by Brian Nelson © 2006. Social and historical context and Author Info.: Nelson, Ketelhut, Clarke, and Bowman worked with Dede at Harvard on the River City Project, which was funded by the National Science Foundation. Additional information about the authors can be found here. In his article on DBR, Dede (2004) suggests that the DBR community should engage in

Distinguishing between Beginners & Experts

When differentiating between the needs of beginners and experts, it is useful to discuss command vectors and working sets. A working set is a “subset of commands and features” that a perpetual intermediate would memorize (Cooper et al., 2007, p. 552). Command vectors “are distinct techniques” through which users “issue instructions to the program” (2007, p. 551). Some examples are drop-down menus, toolbar controls, and pop-up menus. Good programs provide “multiple command vectors” where functions can be performed by going to any number of command vectors depending on the user’s ability (2007, p. 551). Immediate vectors allow for instant function while pedagogic vectors provide intermediate steps. A pedagogic vector is filled with world information, and

Wenger's Constellations

“It was just another night with the sun set and the moon rise not so far behind.  To give us just enough light to lay down underneath the stars.  Listen to papa’s translations of the stories across the sky.  We drew our own constellations.” -Jack Johnson Upon reading Chapter 5 and Coda 1 of Etienne Wenger’s “Communities of Practice,” I am finally able to say the readings are making sense and I can answer a lot of the questions that I had previously about communities of practice.  Wenger introduces Constellations of Practice.  These constellations are groupings of objects, in this case individual communities of practice.  One of the questions I have had up to this