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Learning Theories and Education: Toward a Decade of Synergy

Authored by: John Bransford , Reed Stevens , Dan Schwartz , Andy Meltzoff , Roy Pea , Jeremy Roschelle , Nancy Vye , Pat Kuhl , Philip Bell , Brigid Barron , Byron Reeves , Nora Sabelli

Handbook of Educational Psychology

Print publication date:  May  2006
Online publication date:  November  2012

Print ISBN: 9780805849370
eBook ISBN: 9780203874790
Adobe ISBN: 9781135283520


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Our goal is to provide an overview of important aspects of human learning that are particularly relevant to educators. Doing so represents an exciting but difficult challenge because human learning is a highly complex topic. Different theories have emerged as researchers have focused on different kinds of learning. Some have focused on the acquisition of skills such as learning to type, write and read (e.g., Anderson, 1981; Bryan & Harter, 1897; LaBerge & Samuels, 1974; National Research Council [NRC], 2000). Others have focused on learning with understanding and its effects on schema formation and transfer (e.g., Anderson & Pearson, 1984, Judd, 1908; NRC, 2000; Wertheimer, 1959). Still others study the emergence of new ideas through interactions with other people and through “bumping up against the world” (e.g., Carey, 2000; Gopnik, Meltzoff, & Kuhl, 1999; Karmiloff-Smith & Inhelder, 1974; Papert, 1980; Vygotsky, 1978).

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