Viewing 9 reply threads
  • Author
    Posts
    • #30361
      David Read
      Keymaster
        @david

        In the article, Clark and Mayer discusses three types of processing: extraneous processing, essential processing and generative processing. Of the three the first – extraneous processing – is probably the easiest to understand. The other two take a bit more work. If necessary, read through the section of the article where they are mentioned (pages 37-40) and then respond to the questions below:

        Essential processing

        Clark and Mayer talk about this as the ability to process the ‘inherent complexity of the material’. For students on a pre-sessional, which one of these topic areas do you think would require the most processing from students and why: learning the passive voice, learning how to paraphrase, learning the Harvard referencing system?

        Generative processing

        The authors identify this as the ability of the learner to organise and integrate the content/material into knowledge store. Over the last few weeks you’ve seen plenty of examples of digital content – including those made by yourself. What kinds of tasks or activities do you think might help students to organise and integrate content more effectively?

         

      • #30888
        Sue Everest
        Participant
          @sue

          I think paraphrasing would require the most processing, because it’s a productive skill, which leads to a new piece of writing whereas the passive voice is a tool that can be learned with practice to enhance writing and Harvard referencing, although complicated is not a productive skill and can even be checked using software. Therefore, as paraphrasing requires the most assimilation, it requires the most processing.

          Possibly using an online notation system onscreen, as has been shown on this course, could help students keep notes effectively on lectures, grammar points reviewed in class or to keep a record of how to construct different parts of an essay before then writing their own.

        • #31182
          Robert Anderson
          Participant
            @robert

            I agree with @Sue that paraphrasing would probably require the most essential processing. The complexity of the paraphrase process could result in cognitive overload unless broken up into smaller, more manageable learning chunks. This could be done by focusing initially on the various paraphrase techniques individually (e.g. using synonyms, active to passive verb transformations, etc.), before bringing them all together.

            I think that the kinds of tasks and materials that would encourage generative processing and allow learners on a typical pre-sessional course to organise and integrate content more effectively could include some kind of connection with the students’ subject area, in order to increase relevance and motivation. In the case of learning about paraphrasing, group sort tasks, missing word cloze activities, matching tasks and unjumbling activities, based on a discipline-specific context, are perhaps examples of the types of tasks that could be created to provide opportunity for relevant and engaging practice of target skills.

          • #31240
            Brenda Allen
            Participant
              @azurial

              Essential processing

              Clark and Mayer talk about this as the ability to process the ‘inherent complexity of the material’. For students on a pre-sessional, which one of these topic areas do you think would require the most processing from students and why: learning the passive voice, learning how to paraphrase, learning the Harvard referencing system?

              I was interested that you said ‘learning the Harvard referencing systembecause, taken at face value, that would seem to suggest a lengthy amount of essential processing – even allowing for the help given by the available websites nowadays.  Otherwise I’d agree with my colleagues that paraphrasing would be the most complex of processes, largely for reasons laid out by @Sue.  Learning to apply and manipulate the passive, although complex, is a task that could far more easily broken down into its components – so I would definitely put that one as number three. I notice here that we are also talking about ‘learning the passive’, whereas, with paraphrasing, the emphasis is on learning ‘how to’ – which suggests taking it into another realm.

              Judging by the results we are familiar with, it remains a moot point whether the skills of paraphrasing can, in actuality, ever be fully developed by the array of mechanical approaches so often propounded – whether on or offline. Certainly, the kind of techniques mentioned by @robert play an important part in a teacher’s arsenal or in any asynchronous online materials.  Nonetheless, I can’t help thinking that the true skill of paraphrasing can only be fully achieved by those with higher level reading skills, a superior command of structure and an extensive range of vocabulary and – dare I venture – a genuine feeling for the language which is being manipulated.  (Let alone the content.) Of course, nowadays students can turn to software for paraphrasing too.   I have been trying to locate/remember the name of a paraphrasing tool introduced to us in the Online Technologies course?  @David, I recall this had made a significant attempt to move forwards from mere substitution and raised all manner of ethical and other issues. It was also pretty evident this summer that Chinese students now have some pretty sophisticated software at their disposal in this respect.  I am fascinated by how such tools are created – as at some level (maybe AI) they will have had to break down the inherent complexities of the material in order for these to become both viable and marketable.  This would appear to entail a great deal of essential processing at the outset?  I imagine this is where AI plays a part… aware as I am of my limitations as a layman.  (laywoman… layperson!?!)

              Generative processing

              The authors identify this as the ability of the learner to organise and integrate the content/material into knowledge store. Over the last few weeks you’ve seen plenty of examples of digital content – including those made by yourself. What kinds of tasks or activities do you think might help students to organise and integrate content more effectively?

              Most of the online tools exhibit an extensive range of tasks and activities to help with organisation and content integration – as is evident even if we were only to look at HP5 and Wordwall alone.  Again, @rob has already highlighted some of the key ones available and, like @sue, I have found the Notes function on our present course quite a revelation for online study.  There still seems to be plenty of scope for developing asynchronous tools to aid with the receptive skills online, for example, where many of our accustomed f2f approaches to listening, and especially reading, comprehension can fall flat on their face in the absence of tactility and physical presence.  I feel it is in whole area involving generative processing that the interactivity provided by online learning has so much that is exciting to offer – very much in contrast to the static, paper, ‘workbook’ approach referred to by @david earlier in the forum.

              • #31387
                Georgina Lloyd
                Participant
                  @georgie_l

                  Hi Brenda,

                  You raise some really interesting points about AI and paraphrasing, for which I have no answers! However, I find the language of e-learning fascinating and the fact that we are talking about ‘processing’ – this is of course what computers are brilliant at. I’m not sure how they are developed, but they probably have a ‘processing’ capacity that in some ways is superior to a human being in that they can look at a million examples of ‘good paraphrasing’ rather than the two or three that we might show our students in class. However, what they produce at the end I don’t believe they are able to reflect on, say whether or not it ‘makes sense’ in that particular context – whether or not they have captured the true meaning of the text etc. etc. That, I guess, it still up to the student.

                  Another thing that stuck me about the text was that I have NEVER heard of teaching/training being refered to as ‘manipulation’ before! :scratch: and I wonder if that is something that is particular to this field.

                  Georgie

              • #31257
                Paul Middlemas
                Participant
                  @paul-m

                  Essential processing

                  Agree with the comments made above that paraphrasing would require the most Essential Processing. Guidance can be provided and learning can be chunked (use of synonyms, change word class etc.) but there are much fewer constraints on the potential outcome of what could be produced, in comparison with passives (more limited) and referencing (even more limited) and so without focused guidance processing the content could exceed mental capacity.

                  Generative processing

                  I agree that the activities @Rob mentions here would help students to organise and integrate information, as they could require students to engage and actively process the content. The way these activities are constructed – e.g. adhering to the 6 multi- media principles – would impact the success of the generative process…

                  • #31259
                    Brenda Allen
                    Participant
                      @azurial

                      Some really helpful points here, Paul, and a timely reminder of the importance of employing the six principles.  Learning how to paraphrase effectively definitely exceeds the mental capacity of many – native speakers included.  The notion of there being fewer constraints on the outcome is encouraging.

                  • #31343
                    Naomi Rabin
                    Participant
                      @naomirabin

                      Essential processing

                       

                      Some good points above and interesting ideas. I would probably agree with everyone who has mentioned that paraphrasing would require most processing, though I would argue that ‘learning the passive’ (do we mean simply the form? or various uses, etc) and learning how to reference could also be quite demanding, especially for someone who was new to it.

                      Generative processing

                      Agree with @rob’s great ideas on activities and @paul-m’s point that these would need to adhere to the 6 multi media principles. Perhaps with paraphrasing, more open ending activities such as note-making / summarising key points could also help students organise and integrate their knowledge.

                    • #31344
                      Zsofia Tarjani
                      Participant
                        @zsofit

                        Essential processing

                        I also agree with @all saying that paraphrasing requires the most effort and is the most cognitively challenging task. It’s a complex receptive and productive process that can be broken down as @robert and @paul-m mentioned. I also think that the complexity lies in the fact that there are many outcome options, which can be quite daunting…on this note @azurial, thanks for raising the issue with paraphrasing tools- I’m curious too how these work at all.

                        Generative processing

                        Good point about adhering to the six principles and the range of activities that help us integrate knowledge- this course is a good example of all this really. Some tasks are receptive, some are productive, some require noticing, some require reflection, some are synchronous, some are asynchronous, etc…..I guess what I want to say is that the diversity of engagement reduces the cognitive load and increases motivation.

                        • #31352
                          Brenda Allen
                          Participant
                            @azurial

                            Yes, @zsofit, I agree that one of the joys of this course is the way that it incorporates the underlying principles, putting them into practice as part of our learning experience.  I thought this was very nicely summed up: “the diversity of engagement reduces the cognitive load and increases motivation” and it has given me food for thought as I haltingly work through some of the practical work.

                        • #31386
                          Georgina Lloyd
                          Participant
                            @georgie_l

                            Essential processing

                            If the learning objective is paraphrasing, the essential processing is going to be high. This is because paraphrasing is ‘inherently complex’! First of all, it involves the other two topic areas on the list (passive voice; referencing) and many, MANY more topic areas. It strongly requires students to connect with a lot of their previous learning (long-term memory) and will involve integration on many levels.

                            Generative processing

                            There are many examples from the course and the materials that we have looked at that show how to help students organise and integrate content. The review sections are a good example of this, they show links between the content in the course. The tasks where we create stuff is where a lot of the integration takes place – in those tasks we are actively building on our previous knowledge of the teaching and learning in our field.

                          • #31433
                            Andrew Burke
                            Participant
                              @andrew

                              Not sure I’m grasping the difference between the two but the idea behind paraphrasing is pretty straightforward, it’s the practice that’s hard as there are so many variables with text and text patterns. Good paraphrasing is often about having good grammar, not the essentials of what paraphrasing is; unless good grammar counts as essential processing. So I’d say Harvard Referencing has the most essential processing.

                              Summarising seems a good example of generative processing. If we take the example of introductions, is identifying different parts of an introduction previously introduced generative, or is it not until the student writes their own introduction that it becomes generative?

                            • #31639
                              Juliet Parfitt
                              Keymaster
                                @juliet

                                If we were to use only essential processing, without generative processing, it would be like rote learning the core information, so we can compare referencing, passives, and paraphrasing in terms of how complex the material is to process. However, as @sue, @azurial, @georgie_l, @paul-m,@naomirabin, @zsofit and @andrew suggest, the issue with paraphrasing in particular is that students will never simply replicate exactly what they learnt in the classroom. Regardless of how complex it might be to process initially, students are then required to transfer these skills and apply what they ‘learnt’ to produce something original in their new context, which may look very different to what they produced in the EAP classroom. This could be described as far transfer. Writing a reference list, however, may just require students to replicate what they did in class (near transfer). As @robert mentions, making connections with the students’ subject area might help during generative processing to increase relevance and reduce the transfer distance.

                            Viewing 9 reply threads
                            • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.