Re: CBT v Training Redirect

Subject: Re: CBT v Training Redirect
From: Hope Cascio <hope -dot- d -dot- cascio -at- ARTHURANDERSEN -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 19 Mar 1998 08:46:56 -0500

I was discussing feminist approaches to teaching science last night with a
friend of mine (yes, this is related!) and he drew a "map" of keywords to
demonstrate how even "hard" subjects can be discussed and taught in a
non-hierarchical, dynamically interrelated way. The "map" he drew linked
related words within a subject, showing their relationships. The end
result looked a lot like a web, with a central theme (the main topic) and
the other keywords ranged around it with lines linking them to the main
topic. The lines were labelled to indicate the nature of the
relationships, and the placement of the related keywords were positioned
around the main topic in a way which indicated their relationships to the
other keywords.

While he was showing me this and describing it to me, I thought back to
this string on the listserv, and how we've discussed using a "web" delivery
method (the internet), a medium which is by its nature interrelational
(HTML), and added technology which increases the relational nature of the
presentation (cgi, "cookies") to present what are typically linear CBTs.
It seems to me that many computer based training sessions are being bent
into a linear, hierarchical presentation while using a more "feminine"
(relational, "webby" rather than linear or hierarchical) medium.

One of the weaknesses of CBTs which has been mentioned here is that it is
good for task-level, step-by-step (linear) instruction, but not for
higher-level, overview, broad-knowledge training. Understanding the
interrelations between components of a field of study is an important
aspect of this kind of knowledge.

It seems to me that if we thought of the knowledge we are attempting to
transfer in this non-linear way when designing CBTs, we could take greater
advantage of popular mediums like HTML (and its embedded scripting and
multimedia components) and also tackle higher-level subject matter, rather
than concentrating on the kind of knowledge that is easier to teach through
a linear approach.

I hope this is interesting food for thought, and inspirational of a
discussion here or off-list.

Hope Cascio, Knowledge Transfer Developer
Arthur Andersen Technology Solutions
hope -dot- d -dot- cascio -at- us -dot- arthurandersen -dot- com

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