Friday, November 26th, 2010 | technology
Many success stories are told about computer based training (CBT) – but perhaps you’ve also heard some horror stories about its failures.
The concept behind CBT is sound and the material available is usually of high quality. Why then does it fail at times? The failure of CBT has nothing to do with technology or with the material itself – it fails when the person using it lacks the right attitudes and skills. If you want the computer to be your tutor you need the following qualities:
Motivation: You must have a good reason why you are using CBT. If the going gets tough, remind yourself of your goal. An example of a good motive is your need to master a particular technology so that you can use it as a teaching tool in the classroom.
Self-discipline: CBT is self-study – no lesson schedules are imposed upon you by others. This means that you will have to be a self starter. Flexibility is a big advantage of CBT, but it also poses a danger. It is only by disciplining yourself to stick to your own schedule that you will be able to make a success of this mode of learning. If you’ve tried other forms of self-study methods in the past, and did not succeed, you have a problem – you will have to work extra hard at cultivating self-discipline.
Spirit of adventure: Learning to do new things can be exciting but you must be adventurous – going where you’ve never been before and trying methods you’ve never tried before.
Computer skills: Since the training is computer based, it is understandable that you need basic computer skills before you can benefit from CBT. You don’t have to be a computer expert – but you must know the basics. Imagine you’ve never worked with a computer before, and now you are asked to use the computer to teach you how to use the computer – somehow this doesn’t make sense. Before attempting CBT, spend some time to make sure that you can at least find your way around a computer and the internet.
Many technology tools and software packages nowadays come with a disk containing tutorials or you may be given a link to a site on the internet from where you can download the tutorials – this means you can learn to use the tool by means of CBT. Once you’ve mastered the skill of using CBT you may never need a face-to-face technology course again.
For more technology tips for teachers click here.