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is a static character Pedagogy V Andragogy

Consider the differences between the way in which children and adults learn

Introduction

In this assignment, I intend to consider the possible differences between the way in which children and adults learn. For instance, Piaget believed there to be schemes with four distinct stages of cognitive development.  Between birth and the time a child is ready for school, he/she will pass through two of the four stages.  These stages are the Sensorimotor Stage and the Preoperational Stage. Alternatively, it could be argued that our parents, teachers, and society as a whole condition us, to learn in a particular way, to take our place in society.  This, then in the words of Freire is:

the banking concept of education, in which the scope of action allowed to the student extends only as far as receiving, filing and storing the deposits. (Freire, 1970)

On the other hand, it is suggested, that adults learn from experience and reflection, therefore, it is the way in which people:

understand, or experience, or conceptualise the world around them. (Ramsden, 1992)  

The focus for them then, is gaining knowledge or ability through the use of experience.

These are two extremes of the spectrum of learning and there are, according to theorists such as Piaget, several stages in-between, these are: sensory-motor, pre-operational, concrete-operational and formal-operational.  I intend to look at these stages in detail in the main body of this assignment. Firstly, I intend to consider the meaning of learning and briefly look at the terms pedagogy and andragogy.


Learning

What is learning?  Learning is a process by which we change our behaviour and understanding.  We learn in many ways.  For instance, the cognitive orientation to learning, this could be said to be how children learn, (see child learning section).  Secondly, there is the humanistic orientation to learning, this could be said to be a personal act to fulfil potential, through experience and reflection.  Finally, we have the social/situational orientation to learning; this refers to the way we are pre-conditioned by society.


Child learning: Pedagogy

Firstly, we will look at the term pedagogy, pedagogy means the art and science of educating children and often is used as another word for teaching.  More correctly, pedagogy embraces teacher-focused education.  In the pedagogic model, teachers assume responsibility for making decisions about what will be learned, how it will be learned, and when it will be learned.  Therefore, teachers direct the learning.  This then, according to Friere (70) is the banking method of education.  This term will be considered in greater depth later in this assignment.

Piaget believed schemes apply the basis for future learning, the earliest schemes setting the stage for constructing new and more sophisticated schemes.  Even in a newborn baby, we can find the simplest of schemes.  For example, infants can suck from a bottle, but they quickly apply this to dummies and thumbs.  Later in life, schemes move from a physical sensory-motor focus to more mental aspects.  Toddlers can imagine blocks for stacking and put them to different uses, and eventually learn number schemes, which allow them to further organise their world in new ways.
Schemes develop in this way:
InfancyToddlerhoodChildhoodAdolescence
Action applied to objects Primarily sensory and motor systemsMental processes for organising action Objects, numbers and spatial relationsMental processes for organising self-concept and awareness. IdentityOrganisation of the abstract Meanings of abstract laws and notions, such as physics, life and origins.

Piaget believed there are four distinct stages of cognitive development.  For a complete explanation of these stages, see the table on Piagets stages of cognitive development.

Stage Age Characteristics
Sensorimotor 0-2 Years Your child will begin to make use of her ability to imitate, to think, and to memorise.  She will begin to realise that objects don't cease to exist when they are out-of-sight.  Her actions will become more goal-oriented, rather than motivated through reflexes.
Preoperational 2-7 Years Your childs language skills will begin to develop. She will be able to think in symbolic forms.  Your child will be able to think mental operations through in one direction.  Your child will have difficulty seeing another persons point of view.
Concrete Operational 7-11 Years Your child will be able to solve concrete, hands-on problems in logical fashion.  She will be able to understand laws of ... more

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Testing tools

Testing Tools, A Report on what is Commercially Available

Introduction
Once an application has been developed, the developers must demonstrate that it performs the tasks for which it was designed accurately, reliably and with adequate performance.  For this to be fulfilled extensive testing must be carried out and tools have been built to assist with this process.  Developers have built different types of tool for addressing different aspects of the same general problem.  The importance of proper testing to detect as many errors as feasibly possible has been driven by the increase of malicious or criminal intent on the part of developers that produce applications with functions that facilitate fraud or other criminal activity (an especial risk to the financial industry).  This problem has been addressed by European Community Legislation, increasing the onus on software developers to show that they took all reasonable steps to ensure an application was free of defects and suitable for the purpose for which it was developed.  Failure to do so could leave the developer liable to be sued by anyone have has incurred a loss in any business as a result of software collapse.  The main types of tool that have resulted as a partial result of this are described below.


Testing Tool Categories
There are a large number of testing tools that are available, but they all work in very different ways.  The main types of testing categories are described below.

Static measurement
Tools that analyse source code without executing test cases, but in deriving test cases for the software to be tested.  There are three different types used in industry that are described below:

Code based testing tools accept source code as input and perform a number of analyses that result in the generation of test cases.  This type of automated tool can broken down in to four further categories.  The first are Code analysers that evaluate test modules automatically for proper syntax; statements are then highlighted where the syntax is wrong, if construction is error prone or if an item is undefined.  The second category is Structure checkers where modules are submitted as input and a graph generated, depicting the hierarchy of modules and tools check for structural flaws, for example, determining the location of loops and branches and how they are used within the system.  The third type are Data analysers which review data structures, data declarations and module interfaces, and notes improper linkage between modules, conflicting data definitions and illegal data usage. The final type are Sequence checkers where sequences of events are checked and marked if coded in wrong sequence.

Specialised testing languages enable a software engineer to write detailed test specifications that describe each test case and the logistics for its execution.  An example of one of these languages is Prolog, that is specifically used for test case generation.

Requirements based testing tools isolate specific user requirements and suggest test cases (or classes of tests) that will exercise the requirements.

Dynamic measurement
Tools that analyse source code during execution of test cases by interacting with a program as it is executing and checking the path coverage, test assertions about the value of specific variables and otherwise instrumenting the execution flow of the program.  They can be either intrusive or non-intrusive.  An intrusive tool changes the software to be tested by inserting extra instructions or ‘probes’ that perform the activities mentioned above.  A non-intrusive tool uses a separate hardware processor that runs in parallel with the processor containing the program that is being tested.

Systems can be difficult to test because several parallel operations are being carried out concurrently, which is especially true for real-time systems.  Therefore it is difficult to anticipate the conditions and generate representative test conditions.  However, dynamic test tools can capture a state of events during the execution of a program and so are often called program monitors, because they watch and report the behaviour of the program.  The functions of the monitor are to list the number of times a submodule is called or a line of code is executed.  These statistics tell testers if the test cases have statement coverage.  Another function is to report on whether a decision point has branched ... more

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