General pedagogical aspects pertain to all types of educational software, regardless of content, objectives and/or audience.
1.1.1. Is the computer appropriate? The courseware should take advantage of the unique capabilities of the computer that are not available in another medium such as videotape, a book, or a live patient.
1.1.2. Is the methodology appropriate? The instructional methodologies selected should match the content and audience requirements.
1.1.3. Is spaced practice encouraged? Practice in applying information should occur not only immediately after instruction, but should be spread out over a number of occurrences.
1.1.4. Is lesson length appropriate? Lesson length should be based on the content and the audience. Ideally, instructional content should be a series of short lessons spread over several sessions.
1.1.5. Is mastery level appropriate? The mastery level needs to match the audience and the methodology. Tutorials are often used to provide basic instruction and have a lower mastery expectation than drills that are intended to establish mastery.
1.1.6. Does the lesson adapt to the learner? Whenever possible, the lesson should be customizable. There can be different versions for different languages and different audiences. A restorative dentistry continuing education course may be completed by both dentists and dental assistants, but have different paths, one for each audience. Another example of adaptation is a pre-course questionnaire that tests the users' knowledge in order to customize the course on the fly.
Copyright © 2000-2004 American Dental Association. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. Web site maintained by the Center for Dental Informatics, School of Dental Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh.
Created: January 12, 1999 Revised: