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Subject:Re: Linear vs. Nonlinear From:Barry Batorsky <bbatorsky -at- ADMIN -dot- NJ -dot- DEVRY -dot- EDU> Date:Thu, 14 Aug 1997 15:35:35 -0400
At 12:11 PM 8/13/97 -0500, you wrote:>At 12:11 PM 8/13/97 -0500, you wrote:
-My questions are these:
>What information is available to learn how to distinguish different
>Has anyone ever included this in their user evaluations?
>How do you all think it would apply/change your documentation knowing this
>type of information?
Good questions! There is a long history of research in learning styles and
cognitive styles. It uderlies much current discussion on teaching and
learning in schools. One assumption is of course that any audience is made
up of a mix of these styles, so designing for any audience is designing for
a range of styles. Another is that these "styles" although basic to a
person also vary with familiarity with the subject, so that teachers are
told to assess whether they should act as teacher, advisor, or coach (or
some such distinctions) with each class and each student. You are more
systematic sometimes and less systematic others, more willing to take risks
This is more than a "hard-wired" issue of brain function. The best courses,
we are also told, are ones that use a variety of delivery methods. This
whole issue may open up a cognitive psychologist's can of worms: which
"styles" are basic, how does "style" affect the use of materials, etc., but
I, too, would like to know the answers people give to these questions,
particularly if there are explicit attempts to assess them in usability
testing or to use them to design documentation.
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