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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Google Sites and Social Learning Theory

Welcome back! Hope you had an amazing summer! It was so awesome to have thirty fellow teachers from all academic areas interested in learning to build and develop a Google Site.  If you haven't heard this year I've headed back to grad school to learn more about learning and technology.  I have not been disappointed, there has been much to learn about Instructional Design and Learning Theories.  I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the Google Sites Professional Development that was provided in the context of Social Cognitive Learning Theory.

Social Cognitive Learning Theory, emerged due to the work of Albert Bandura. Social Cognitive Learning Theory emphasizes that learning occurs in a social context and that much of what is learned is gained through observing a model. There are five central concepts in Social Cognitive Learning Theory. 

1.    People learn by observing models
2.    People gain high self-efficacy by believing they can complete the learning successfully and by themselves.
3.    People learn to self-regulate by observing consequences of acceptable and unacceptable behavior.
4.     People learn to self-monitor consciously thinking about when one is engaged in a learning task.
5.    People also can change their behavior by self-reinforcement, getting a Twix bar once my blog post is written.

I began to wonder if video tutorials fit the Social Cognitive learning Theory and I think I am correct in thinking that video tutorials are a way to learn through social context, modeling, and observation.
1.    Teachers who came to the Professional Development for Google Sites watched the videos and created at least two pages for a Google Site.
2.    As I’ve checked in with the attendee’s through email, in the hallways and trolling the school website to see what has been created, all thirty attendees have a Google Site with more than two pages.
3.    The attendees demonstrated self-regulating behavior by diligently using the two hours to work on their school website, raising their hands for help or speaking to their peers around them.
4.    These were teachers on a mission, they wanted a viable Google Site when they walked out the door. So they easily self-regulated and watched the videos to build their Google Site.
5.    There were two attendees who find technology challenging and each time they completed a new Google Sites page they gave each other a high-five and hip bump. It was quite entertaining for the rest of us.

In reflection, I find that I learn well in a Social Cognitive Learning environment using videos. I've taught myself how to knit, new crochet stitches, and new cooking techniques. For me videos provide me with the ability to move towards self-efficacy because I can pause rewind and watch again.  I hope the attendees found the Google Tutorial videos helpful.
More modeling and observation needed to reach self-efficacy

Omrod,J.E. (2012) Human Learning: Sixth Edition. Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.

Denler, H., WOlters, C., & Benzon, M. (2014, January 28). Social Cognitive Theory. Retrieved September 20, 2014, from http://www.education.com/reference/article/social-cognitive-theory/

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