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Factors affecting the learning process and how to deal with them (Coursework Sample)


an essay about contextual factors in a classroom that affect learning. the essay was subdivided into different sections as shown in the uploaded paper


Factors affecting the learning process and how to deal with them
Contextual factors essay
Classroom factors
There are many factors that affect the learning process in a classroom situation. According to Johnson (1975), “background features of a classroom play an important role in the learning process” (p. 89). However, some features while necessary, can serve as distractors. Such factors include things like computers, mobile phones and other handheld computing devices. These devices are crucial for quick dissemination of information, but they also provide a means for students to distract themselves.
The observed classroom required all phones to be either switched off or in silent mode. This helps reduce interruptions to the class by limiting the use of the devices in the room. It also helps focus the attention of the students to the instructor.
The class did not have any predefined arrangement and the students could sit anywhere they felt comfortable. This helps create a conducive environment for the students by ensuring that they are not distracted by uncomfortable sitting arrangement.
The class required students to be settled in class for a lesson at least five minutes before the instructor arrives. This is to help save time that would otherwise be spent on settling for the class.
Student characteristics
This class was designed for teenagers from different cultures and backgrounds. This means that the content to be covered has to be impartial so as not to offend any of the students. The content chosen also had to be standardized to ensure that it represented the level of learning that the students can easily understand. Since the classroom was for teenagers, content that may be quite challenging can easily distract them and take their attention to something else. Some of them can even consider giving up on the class altogether if they deem it too difficult.
The class was for both genders and thus the content had to be tailored to reflect both preferences. This included ensuring the use of learning aids while teaching the students so as to focus their attention. Both the sexes preferred a lively environment where they can easily participate in the learning process. Moreover, both sexes preferred an instructor they can easily relate to in terms of age and technological knowhow. Therefore, this requires the hiring of a young energetic individual to relate to and teach the students easily.
Student skills and how they affect:
Learning goals
Teenagers are technology savvy with the knack for the latest information from the tech world. This means that the inclusion of a technology related activity will help keep them focused on the lesson. It is therefore recommended to use many learning aids that are technological in nature or encourage the use of technology in class. However, this needs to be limited so as to avoid a situation where it leads to distracting them rather than helping them.
It is also necessary to consider disseminating instructions to the students in an electronic manner to ensure that all of them are informed. This is because most of them keep their electronic gadgets close and know how to use them effectively. Choosing any other method to disseminate information would prove to be inefficient.
It is necessary to consider providing constant and ongoing assessments for this class. This is so as to ensure that the classroom remains focused on the lesson objectives. It is easy for teenagers to be distracted and focus their attention on other things. Therefore, the use of constant assessment tests as well as electronic assessment will help ensure the student remain focused. It is also plausible to consider using online survey methods for this classroom. This is because the students would participate better when the surveys are done online rather than when traditional methods are used. The students would find it easy to interact with computers and other hand held computing devices. When assessment is done electronically, the students will benefit from getting their results instantly as opposed to waiting for a few hours or days.
Learning goals and objectives essay
For this essay, a class known as Behavioral Psychology will be created. At the end of the class, the students should be able to:
1 Identify the most common behavior patterns in students
2 Identify the source of distractions for students in class
3 List the major indicators of a disturbed student
4 Explain how to identify a special needs student in a class
5 Explain how to deal with special needs students in a class
6 Explain how to deal with internal wrangles among the students in the classroom.
7 Conduct experiments to prove the existence of and remedy of common psychological problems students go through.
8 Develop a hypothesis about an observed psychological situation in class or outside class and prove it with existing theories or develop a new approach to the situation.
The above objectives are designed to help the students understand their role in the learning process. They arm the student with the knowledge that can help them understand what they need to do so as to get the maximum from a class.
The objectives also ensure the use of scientific methods to explain phenomena through the use of experiments. According to Salili & Hoosain (2003), “this helps students develop problem solving skills based on a scientific approach” (p. 103). This guarantees development of solutions that can be verified and are abstract. It also encourages students to develop an inquisitive mind which is essential for the learning process.
The objectives are also designed to allow the students develop different perspectives about situations. This encourages the discovery of new ideas and ways of dealing with common problems that the students may be facing. It also encourages students to develop local solutions to their problems as opposed to relying on some external source.
Original assessment plan
For the pre-assessment, the following questions will be issued to the students. They will be required to fill them in with what they consider to be the best solution to the questions given. Its purpose is to know how much the students know about behavioral psychology.
1. What's the first thing that you do when you enter a classroom?
2. What do you think takes away your attention from class?
3. How do you behave when you have a problem in class?
4. How would you tell if your classmate is going through a hard time?
5. What would you do to help such a student?
6. What do you do when you disagree with your friend in class?
Formative assessment
Three methods will be used to continually monitor the progress of the students. The first method will the issuing of one-minute papers. This will require students to write down a point or two from the current class or a previous class that was unclear to them. All the responses from the students will provide insight on how the students are responding to the teaching.
The second method will be the use of reading logs. This will be instructions to the students requiring them to document the progress of their reading. The reading logs will be checked on a regular basis to ensure that all students are reading the material provided for them in class.
Lastly personal response systems will be used in some classes. This is an electronic means of collecting feedback from the students. The questions will be based on the course content as well as the course objectives for the week. According to Uden (2006), “the use of electronic means to collect data provides a fast and efficient way to collect feedback from the students” (p. 23). The responses will be compared to the reading objectives of the lesson and see how the students have fared.
Post Assessment
For the post assessment, the students will be required to present an oral project on the effects of bullying on other students, a PowerPoint presentation on proper behavior in classrooms and lastly a research paper on an observed psychological issue observed in class. They will be required to observe any behavior in their colleagues and write a 3 page essay on what they think causes such behavior. The students will be graded based on mastery of the class content as well as the use of academic sources to defend their ideas. The following table summarizes the post assessment criteria.
Intended Outcome

Assessment Task

Expected Level of achievement

Results of assessment

Action to be taken

Student should learn about and fulfil three class objectives from this exercise, learn about distractions in class, learn how to identify a special needs student in class and how to deal with a disruptive situation in class.

Oral Presentation in class about bullying

Be able to articulate the major reasons for bullying and its outcomes.
Support answers with research from scholarly sources

The student should learn about the general behavior patterns of students in class

PowerPoint presentation on proper behavior in class

Give at least three proper behavior expected from students in class.
Come up with a recommendation to improve the behavior of students in classes

The student should be able to learn how to conduct research on behavioral and write scientific articles on the subject

3 page research paper on an observed psychological issue in class

Come up with a common psychological issue in class.
Use correct referencing of all sources used
Avoid plagiarism

How the assessments measure student understanding
The pre...
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