Publication 7704

Honebein P. C., Duffy T. M. & Fishman B. J. (1993) Constructivism and the design of learning environments: Context and authentic activities for learning. In: Duffy T. M., Lowyck J. S. & Jonassen D. (eds.) Designing environments for constructivist learning. Springer, Berlin: 87–108.
Apprenticeship is one of the earliest forms of learning by doing, where a student learns a task, such as weaving, masonry, or even thinking under the tutelage of an expert. Skill and knowledge development in apprenticeship can cross several disciplines, but is always set in the context of the authentic activity of solving the larger task at hand. A skill like masonry, therefore, may require knowledge of some aspects of geology, geometry, basic mathematics, structural engineering, etc. Similarly, the development of logical thought by Plato’s students was always set in the context of the larger philosophical debate and in developing rhetorical skills. Thus the larger task, the construction task, provides an organizing and unifying role and a purpose for learning.
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