Research and Best Practices

Jul 09, 2020

We are designing a series of courses and the existing curriculum has modules on business acumen and finance. There are three modules on these topics that are used with a case study. The case study and the content advances in difficulty as your learning acquisition increases. Is there any research, or your own experience, that would lead toward a design having the three modules in sequence or spacing the three modules out with 1-2 unrelated content in between. In essence, is knowledge gained more readily if the content is in sequence rather than spaced out. Does the brain process information better under either circumstance? I believe that this is closely related to scaffolding concepts. Thanks.

5 Replies
Dave Goodman

The course content belongs to the client so I can not share that. The general direction of the content starts with the basics of finance and accounting, the associated financial sheets, explanation of the terms with examples, 2-3 case studies, solutions, mentoring on the topics. Then the content goes deeper and is then applied to a series of situations in which the learner needs to determine the impact on the organization as things change, e.g., decrease in revenue projections causes X to happen in obligations, purchases, inventory, etc. The final content is toward the external impact and perceptions of the company during the ups/downs of financial conditions. So we cover the same topics as your course but might differ in the case studies and application knowledge transfer. Hope this helps.

Judy Nollet

Hi, David,

I saw a short presentation about this topic recently. Research shows that interleaving works well to increase long-term learning. Here's their visual description of interleaving:

And here's an example (with the correct answer circled): 

The presentation didn't directly address scaffolding, but I believe there's research to support presenting content via increasing levels of difficulty. 

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