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Educational Technology Research and Development

, Volume 62, Issue 5, pp 571–582 | Cite as

A process for the critical analysis of instructional theory

  • Jay A. Bostwick
  • Isaac Wade Calvert
  • Jenifer Francis
  • Melissa Hawkley
  • Curtis R. Henrie
  • Frederick R. Hyatt
  • Janeel Juncker
  • Andrew S. Gibbons
Development Article

Abstract

Some have argued for a common language in the field of instructional design in an effort to reduce misunderstandings and simplify a multitude of synonymous terms and concepts. Others feel that this goal is undesirable in that it precludes development and flexibility. In this article we propose an ontology-building process as a way for readers to compare and analyze terms and concepts across theories. This process entails the development of categories that emerge from the literature, and the comparison of theories across categories. Such a process can reveal broader concepts that exist beyond specific theoretical terminology, differences in meanings behind common terms used by theorists, a greater understanding of the theorists’ intent, and discontinuities and gaps within the theoretical literature.

Keywords

Instructional theories Analyze Compare Ontology Terminology Interpret 

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Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications and Technology 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jay A. Bostwick
    • 1
  • Isaac Wade Calvert
    • 1
  • Jenifer Francis
    • 1
  • Melissa Hawkley
    • 1
  • Curtis R. Henrie
    • 1
  • Frederick R. Hyatt
    • 1
  • Janeel Juncker
    • 1
  • Andrew S. Gibbons
    • 1
  1. 1.Brigham Young UniversityProvoUSA

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