What Is Trilogy of the Mind?

The effort to establish artificial intelligence with computers has lead to major strides in this area. A lot of money has been spent trying to create and establish a machine that can function like the human brain. With some of the finest brains the world has ever known working on this problem, we still have not yet been able to create such a machine. This is because the human brain is one complex entity.

We take things into our minds in more ways than just through our five senses and conscious processes. The processes of our minds involve more than just cognition and reasoning. The human brain has two different hemispheres with many different areas and layers, all functioning to help us learn. Researchers and neurosciences are just now beginning to discover, thanks to advanced brain-mapping technologies, what regions of the brain might be responsible for human mental processing. While long-term memory is where information is stored using schema and the transference and recall of information. While long-term memory is where information is stored using schema and encoding and retrieval techniques, the primary emphasis on working memory is discussed in terms of cognitive load and overload. What becomes apparent is that we cannot retrieve information or knowledge that has not gone into our memory. We can’t get it out if it never went in.

It also becomes apparent that not only do we think with our brains, but with our minds. It is through our consciousness that we take in information. Knowledge enters through the mind which is part of the brain. The brain is what allows the mind to operate, but the brain and the mind are not the same thing. Mind includes all elements of our conscious and unconscious experiences and is subjective in nature while the brain is the center of the nervous system in humans.

Designing instruction so that the mind can take it in is both an art and a science. The discipline of instructional design combines a lot of different skill sets and is, at a minimum, a marriage of several worlds: psychology, education, art and technology. You can create better instruction if you can get your priorities straight. Far too often we become enamored of a new idea, theory or technology, and off we go: facebooking, podcasting and uploading videos to YouTube. None of these, however, necessarily help people learn.

I have my own theory on how people learn. I call it, “Trilogy of the Mind.” I do not believe that people learn only by thinking; I believe their emotions and natural instincts play a very important part in learning. Trilogy of the Mind is, therefore, a threefold approach to learning that incorporates the affective, cognitive and conative domains.

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