programmed instruction

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programmed instruction,

method of presenting new subject matter to students in a graded sequence of controlled steps. Students work through the programmed material by themselves at their own speed and after each step test their comprehension by answering an examination question or filling in a diagram. They are then immediately shown the correct answer or given additional information. Computers and other types of teaching machines are often used to present the material, although books may also be used. Computer-assisted instruction, which both tests students' abilities and marks their progress, may supplement classroom activity or help students to develop ideas and skills independently.

The first teaching machine was invented (1934) by Sydney L. Pressey, but it was not until the 1950s that practical methods of programming were developed. Programmed instruction was reintroduced (1954) by B. F. SkinnerSkinner, Burrhus Frederic,
1904–90, American psychologist, b. Susquehanna, Pa. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1931, and remained there as an instructor until 1936, when he moved to the Univ. of Minnesota (1937–45) and to Indiana Univ.
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 of Harvard, and much of the system is based on his theory of the nature of learning. As programming technology developed, so did the range of teaching machines and other programmed instruction materials. Programs have been devised for the teaching of spelling, reading, arithmetic, foreign languages, physics, psychology, and a number of other subjects. Some programs are linear in concept, allowing advancement only in a particular order as the correct answer is given. Others are branching, giving additional information at the appropriate level whether a correct or incorrect answer is given.

Although there has been considerable controversy regarding the merits of programmed instruction as the sole method of teaching, many educators agree that it can contribute to more efficient classroom procedure and supplement conventional teaching methods. Teaching machines enable students to work individually, calling for active participation of the learner. In industry and the armed services, programmed instruction is often used to train personnel.


See P. Callender, Programmed Learning (1969); L. Thomas, Self-Organized Learning (1985).

References in periodicals archive ?
"Programmed Instruction in Large-Lecture Courses." Journal of Economic Education, 4(2): 125-29.
The importance of overt responding in programmed instruction even with added incentives for learning.
Two other studies used filmed or videotaped programmed instruction to examine reading recognition and comprehension (Di Carlo, 1980) and comprehension of indirect requests such as "can" and "should" (Levey & Goldfarb, 2003) with participants who had aphasia.
There are no maintenance trials in programmed instruction. The good news is that we have exciting new findings in the formation of repertoires and this means that early intervention can make important new advances.
The theory and application of programmed instruction (however delivered) is commonly associated with the work of Harvard psychologist B.
SEVERAL METHODS OF PROVIDING distance learning classes are currently available, including two-way interactive televised instruction (e.g., Thyer, Artelt, Markward, & Dozier, 1998; Thyer, Polk, & Gaudin, 1997), instruction through electronic mail and the Internet, and software-based programmed instruction (Thyer et al., 1008).
Then, computers in both business and educational settings were largely used in passive ways - to house data and impart information, or for programmed instruction.
Between 1986 and 1990 1 wrote Advanced Technology in Education, a textbook for a university course that I called "Computers in Education II: Advanced Technology."[2] (The second edition should be available in early 1995.) Then in 1988 I designed a third technology course that I called "Computers in Education III: Instructional Design for Multimedia." This advanced graduate course makes use of an excellent -- but tough to read -- text, Instructional Design: Implications from Cognitive Science.[3] If you are tired of old-fashioned instructional design that amounts to little more than frame-by-frame programmed instruction, you will appreciate this text.
The programmed instruction already in place was supplemented with good-quality CAI software by Computer Curriculum Corp.
Technologists seem to learn best through such concrete methods as programmed instruction, manuals, demonstrations, field trips, and practice.
Competency-based programs are a modern interpretation of programmed instruction where specific competencies presented in modules are learned, and until a test is passed a learner is not permitted to move to the next module.

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