See also: {} {} {Montessori} {} {Piaget} {} {} {} {} {}


On this page: {Intro} {Programmed Instruction} {The Skinner Box} {Skinner - A Redux} {PSI - Personalised System of Instruction} {} {} {} {} {} {} {} {Links}


Oddly enough, the idea of the "Skinner Box" and the "Programmed Instruction" concepts tend to cast some sort of Frankensteinian pall over Skinner's work. Having been brought up using those techniques as well as having studied his ideas for some time; whilest i had visions of becoming a maths teacher. So...

Intro: Programmed Instruction

See also: {
PSI - Personalised System of Instruction} Oddly enough, the concept of programmed instruction is very much alive and well - especially in how language is taught. Hello, My name is Francoise. How are you? Where is the school? Across from the post office. How do i get to the post office? Down Avenue A, and then to the left. etc., etc. That is, each "new" bit of information builds directly on the point just presented. In the formal programmed instruction method (using paper), a piece of card board covers up the answers in the next "frame". Each frame presents some information. And next to it is a question about what you just learned. Usually this is a very short, and obvious answer. As you progress down the page, the terms build up and slowly terms are used without re-enforcement. Of course, you can look back up the page for information should you need it. But, once you turn the page a new set of frames is presented and it becomes a hassel (and mostly un-necessary) to turn back to the previous page(s). Also, pages alternate in style: 1) Present new material. 2) Review a bit of the previous page, and then go on a bit. One of the things is that the material IS comletely self-paced. And if you have questions, you can always consult other course material; eg, text books, or "in depth" study guides. One of the most successful of these was called "SRA" for "Survey, Reading, and Analysis". Each unit of learning came as a packet. The first part was a small booklet that told you what you would be studying (eg, "The Essay - Persuaison"). Next would be the material itself. It was a self-contained booklet about the subject at hand and presented information and then a brief quiz about it. At the end of each sub-unit it would have an option: If you feel that you understand this material turn to Page x. If you think you might need some more help,turn to the next page. When you completed that booklet, there was and "Analysis" booklet - ie, the test. You filled out a test form and filled in all of the information. This was then handed in to be graded - right there with you and the three booklets. The teacher could quickly see if you were un-clear about anything and would then have extra drill material. The advangtages of this sort of instruction should be clear: It allows each studten to proceed at their own pace - thus leading to less frustration for both slow or fast learners. The teacher can present an introductory lesson and then let each student work on the details. But, most of the instruction is provided by the materials not the teacher. Thus, the teacher's time can be spent one one one with each student on problems or ideas that they have. Follow-up sessions allow students to compare notes. On the down-side, the method assumes a great deal of maturity and self-motivation from each student. Also, considerable care must go into the preparation of materials. Slow and fast learners would have to have special learning systems in place to handle their needs. But, this is a constant problem in any case.

Intro: The Skinner Box

Skinner - A Redux

PSI - Personalised System of Instruction

Again from the duskin page on skinner: The principles of programmed learning have been incorporated into a method of instruction that is usually called Personalized System of Instruction (PSI). PSI is a self-paced instruction format where each student works his or her way through the course material, which is broken down into small steps. Each student must "master" the material in one unit through a quiz before moving on to the next unit. Because of active student participation, small steps, immediate feedback, and reinforcement, PSI can be very effective (Reiser, 1984).


In this section: {

Links - Of Interest


Operant Lerning - classics

Some of Skinner's papers, etc... -[]- Sustained performance during very long experimental sessions. B. F. Skinner and W. H. Morse. 1958 August; 1(3): 235-244. -[NIH link to that DOC, via JEAB]- Accessed on 2008.04.26 @ 23:13 PST +10GMT Some factors involved in the stimulus control of operant behavior. W. H. Morse and B. F. Skinner. 1958 January; 1(1): 103-107. -[NIH link to that DOC, via JEAB]- Accessed on 2008.04.26 @ 23:31 PST +10GMT -[]-

PSI & Programmed Learning

-['s excellent pages]- -[TIP entries on Skinner]- (Operant Conditioning) -[Behaviourist stuff]- -[]- -[]-