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15. “Realtime feedback” is at the core of cognitive development.

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15. “Realtime feedback” is at the core of cognitive development.

Because we are largely addicted to the rush that comes from the prediction-outcome dichotomy, feedback can be hugely motivational --if provided in real time. We crave the sustained dopamine rush when we have a string of correct responses. Dopamine levels drops, however, when we are incorrect. We, at lower levels of the brain, accordingly re-map our networks to produce the correct response in order to go back to the dopamine rush because we don't desire the drop in dopamine (Thorsten, 2008). This is of course why video games are so massively popular and why they provide hours of seemingly never-ending motivation, while 10-15 minutes of homework can make learners fall asleep. Most homework does not provide realtime feedback. However, if homework were designed into a video game format that provides realtime feedback, the appeal will be much stronger. Homework has the potential of being addictive if turned into good video game with corrective feedback, if the timing is right, the corrective feedback can be a potent learning experience (Galvan et al., 2006). Players also learn perseverance for their next learning experience with properly times feedback (Gee, 2007). The same goes for classroom experiences. Thankfully, game theory is now being seriously explored in the classroom and is showing highly positive results. This ties in well with Differentiated Instruction, and the provision of choices, which all are highly motivational and are non-coincidentally must closer to real-life experiences than traditional (and often contrived) teaching methods.

Q. Identify a few real-time feedback contexts and a few delayed feed-back contexts. What can you do to implement more realtime feedback for your students both inside of the classroom and outside of the classroom?

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