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Imagine you are a classroom teacher. Select a grade level and subject you are teaching. Identify the standards you want students to know and be able to do. Using principles of cognitive psychology, describe how you will use these three instructional strategies: elaboration; prior knowledge; and visual imagery to insure meaningful learning. One of the strategies should also address the needs of the learning disabled students in your classroom. Be specific and concrete in the description of the lessons.


As a level 3 classroom teacher teaching education, I should be recognized and rewarded for my exceptional teaching practices. I would like my students to achieve professional standards from my teachings. The students should be able to answer multiple-choice questions that will help them discriminate between options, make simple judgments, and comprehend concepts. They should also be able to match and sequence events. Through this, they will identify relationships, draw cause and effect charts, and classify various items according to the given instructions. The students should be in a position to effectively answer true false and yes-no questions. By mastering this concept, the students gain the knowledge to generalize, relate, and give examples, and also predict and evaluate different events (Barsalou, 2014).

The students should be able to give short factual answers and complete fill-ins. By doing this, they are able to recall and classify facts, solve simple science and mathematical problems, and understand important terms and concepts. The students should also be able to handle higher order short answer questions. In doing this, the students will acquire special skills needed to predict, analyze, summarize, evaluate, conclude, and apply the different concepts taught. The students will also handle short, long essays that will help them in organizing ideas, comparing concepts, developing logical arguments, communicate thoughts or feelings, demonstrate original thinking, and are able to evaluate positions or data.

Despite the importance of the above questions at different times, the students will need to be involved in non-objective tasks that require in-depth responses to produce valid information about their understanding. Hence, as a teacher, I will attempt to use these types of items when possible. Foe instance, to be sure that the students can deliver an excellent speech; I should give them the opportunity to deliver one. Non-objectives tasks are efficient although on the other hand, they are time consuming to administer and evaluate. To aid the in selection of the appropriate assessment method, I consider various factors such as the content of the unit. Here, the best questions to measure the understanding of the content must be applied. The other factor is efficiency, which define what types of assessment will simplify the creation, grading, and administration of the concepts. The other factors to consider include the breadth of material, depth of knowledge and distorting factors that might prevent students’ mastery.

Cognitive psychology focuses on the methods people process information. Cognitive psychology studies internal processes that include perception, attention, language, thinking, and memory. By using the principles of cognitive psychology, a level three teacher is able to use instructional strategies such as elaboration, prior knowledge, and visual imagery to ensure meaningful learning for students. To begin with, elaboration is a strategy where the students use elements of what is to be done and expands them. The students expand the main information by relating other relevant information to it. Elaboration strategies connect information to be learned with information familiar to the students. This method is stress free because connections create efficiency of learning and memory. Since elaboration strategies create connections to information meant to be learned, they are powerful instructional tools for a level 3 teacher in classroom. The confidence created when students have already understood the connected information support their learning of new information (Fivush, Haden, & Reese, 2006).

The other instructional strategy that uses principles of cognitive psychology is prior knowledge. Activating prior knowledge is vital because it helps the students make connections to the new information they will be learning. By tapping into what students already know, the level 3 teachers can assist them with the learning process. By helping students make the connections before, during, and after they read, teachers can help them develop a critical comprehension strategy that the best readers use almost unconsciously. Prior knowledge strategies that proficient readers use when trying to make sense out of text help to deepen understanding and create independent readers (Beier, & Ackerman, 2005). The level three teachers link classroom activities and instruction to prior knowledge to build on students’ familiarity with certain topics. Most students will learn and recall new information when it is linked to related prior knowledge.

Another strategy of cognitive psychology in learning is use of visual imagery. This refers to a method of learning where the learner understands and retains information given by the tutor when ideas, concepts, and words are associated with images. Most research indicates that students in a regular classroom need to see information in order to learn it. Visual learning is appropriate for students with speech and hearing impairments. Visual imagery helps students to clarify their thoughts, organize and analyze information, integrate new knowledge, and think critically. Some of the common visual learning strategies include diagramming, outlining, graphic organizers, and mind mapping. Level three teachers use visual imagery in teaching students because visual learning and thinking utilize graphical ways of working with ideas and presenting information. Visual learning strategies are effective in classrooms and they are efficient to all students regardless of their ages (D’Argembeau, & Van der Linden, 2006).

In conclusion, cognitive psychology is interested in studying what happens within the minds, that links stimulus and response. Cognitive psychology is goal oriented and addresses problems from the beginning. Most teachers should adopt the different principles of cognitive psychology in delivering information to their students. Through this, students get a better understanding of different topics and execute them accordingly.

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