Defining the Model

It’s been a really interesting week reading about pedagogical models for online learning programs.

Firstly the paper by Naba Dabbagh (2005) helped to show the different models for eLearning practice. It appears that the most common model for eLearning that I am currently using can be defined as “distributed learning” which can be defined as follows;

“When telecommunications media is utilized, distributed learning refers to off-site learning environments where learners complete courses and programs at home or work by communicating with faculty and other students through e-mail, electronic forums, videoconferences, and other forms of computer-mediated communication and Internet and Web-based technologies.” (Dabbagh, 2005)

Distributed learning, for me, involves a heavy reliance on asynchronous activity. Simulations are built, distributed to learners and then completed by the learners within an agreed time frame.

Whilst the work I do fits within the distributed learning model, I do believe that there are other models out there that can better define the type of learning I create namely, the CCAF model proposed by Michael Allen (2016). This model is applied to learning packages that our learners take in order to learn on-the-job skills and is very vocationally focused.

CCAF stands for;

“Context – the framework and conditions

Challenge – a stimulus to action within the context

Action – a physical response to the challenge

Feedback – reflection of the effectiveness of the learner’s action” (Allen, 2016)

Within this model we look for “Instructional Interactivity”, Allen defines this as;

“Interaction that actively stimulates the learner’s mind to do those things that improve ability and readiness to perform effectively” (Allen, 2016)

In a number of ways this addresses the need for “Authentic” learning activities that Dabbagh discuses that are defined as follows;

“Authentic activities have real-world relevance” (Oliver et al, 2006)

Authentic learning is vital in the CCAF model of eLearning. Allen encourages a realistic context and challenge. He suggests giving the learner access to the tools they will need to perform the action to meet the challenge. Feedback then displays the consequences of failure or success in the situation.

In conclusion I believe that I use a number of models that can be summarised as below;

Distributed authentic learning experiences that provide realistic contexts and challenges for encouraging learner action whilst providing performance feedback.

Maybe that should be my new sales pitch!


Allen, M, (2016) “Michal Allen’s guide to e-Learning, Second Edition, Wiley

Dabbagh, N. (2005). “Pedagogical models for E-Learning: A theory-based design framework.”, International Journal of Technology in Teaching and Learning, 1(1), 25-44.

Oliver, R., Herrington, J., Thomas, R., (2006) “Chapter 36: Creating authentic learning environments through blended learning approaches” from Bonk, C., Graham, C, The handbook of blended learning: global perspectives, local designs pp.502-515, San Francisco: Pfeiffer.

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