One of the implications of Cognitive Load Theory is that inquiry-based learning is ineffective. When I make this point, I often provoke a response similar to Mike Ollerton’s response here:
The second point perhaps has some validity. No matter how many instances I can point to where it doesn’t work, I cannot rule out that there is a context where it does. However, it is the first point that has caused me to reflect.
There are two reasons why my own PhD research is different to a school student learning basic maths or science. I am further along the novice-expert continuum and so less guided forms of learning become more effective – this is the ‘expertise reversal effect’ from Cognitive Load Theory. I am also trying to answer a question which has not been fully answered before. If it had, it may be more efficient for me to obtain…
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