Graduate Catalog 2012-2013
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EDD 625 Activity Approach to Development and Learning (Effective Fall 2011)
3 lecture hours; 1 conference hour; 4 credits
Why is school knowledge so inert -- so difficult for students to transfer and implement in real-life problem solving? The course explores this issue using the ideas of cultural-historical activity theory of development and learning. It challenges the view of mind as "container for knowledge" and the view of knowledge as information and then offers a fresh look at many popular notions in contemporary education, such as construction of knowledge, hands-on learning, student-centered instruction, discovery learning, and others. The critical difference between memorization and learning with implications for classroom teaching is discussed. The main goal is to examine how teachers can turn from "stuffing" students' minds with information to promoting the development of their thinking.
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