Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Feedback: the forgotten design element

In the Design of Everyday Things, Norman talks about the feedback we get when we are not on the right track. You know that sound your PC/Mac makes when you try to do something that your computer is not interested in doing? This sound helps us stop and consider what we did wrong, and what is needed to achieve the desired result. When this feedback is not provided, particularly when we are learning something new, we are at risk of going down the wrong path for a while before realizing things are not working. As a seasoned classroom facilitator, I am owning up to the idea that I have missed many opportunities to offer feedback through the years. Since reading Norman I am seeing opportunities to build quick knowledge tests into my classroom delivery to ensure concepts and models are clear. I have experimented with voting cards, team-based knowledge tests, and game formats to make it fun. All the while, I am checking for knowledge and providing feedback. I cannot hope to achieve level three results, unless I have first ensured level two success!

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