Monday, October 17, 2011

JHMI Internship: Phase 1 - Week 3 (starting 10/10/11)

     I continued to work on my design document and completed a first draft of the learning objectives.  Although the training materials provided include learning objectives, I found that most of them are not really measurable (e.g. use words like know, understand, etc.).  Therefore, I had to re-write most of them to use action verbs instead (e.g. describe, demonstrate, etc.). 

     To help me in this effort, I used Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning.  Bloom's Taxonomy is a classification for learning objectives and is divided into three domains: cognitive (dealing with mental processes), affective (dealing with attitudes) and psychomotor (dealing with motor skills).  As my focus deals primarily with the cognitive domain, there are six associated steps: knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis and evaluation.  In order to maximize learning, it is suggested that one progress through the steps sequentially, as each increases in mental challenge than the one before.

     As the only proposed form of assessment at this point is basic multiple-choice quizzes provided in the training materials, I decided to not include objectives further than the application step. I also discussed this issue further with my onsite adviser and I was informed that the majority of online courses developed within Interactive Learning generally don't reach far into the later steps.  In the end, I decided to include one objective for each of the first three steps in my course.  It should also be noted that since course participants aren’t receiving credit for completing the course, there is no formal assessment requirement (i.e. it’s optional).
     Upon completion of my course learning objectives, I reviewed them with my onsite adviser.  She approved of them, so I continued to work on completing the remainder of the design document.  Once I completed it, I met with my onsite adviser once again to get her feedback.  I took note of the changes she requested and updated my document accordingly. 

     Another important point that was discussed in the last meeting with my onsite adviser, despite being a bit late, was the need for the LoC training program in the first place.  I learned that each department within Johns Hopkins has a set of surveys completed by various entities (e.g. patients, auditors, etc.) and that the results of these surveys have direct implications on certain types of funding received.  Therefore, to help ensure results are at the highest level, Service Excellence initiatives such as the LoC program are put into place.  Again, it would have been ideal to have this information earlier in the project but, because a formal needs analysis was not required, it slipped my radar.  However, it is an opportunity for me to learn from and pay special attention to for future ISD projects.

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