Saturday, April 5, 2014

"Automatic Knowledge" is what teachers should aim for: teach to make the information automatic (beyond understanding)... make the processes unconscious.

Richard E. Clark describes why students need to practice new material until the ifnormation is AUTOMATIC.  Understanding is not enough.

This video is a segment of a 68-minute video located at
You can see the full interview with Dr. Richard E. Clark (from University of Southern California) at youtube DOT c o m / turbombom (the channel by Ki Bong Song).

here is the transcription

Automated knowledge. Most of human knowledge is automated and unconscious. Most of what we know is unconscious. We have to learn more about implicit knowledge or expertise, there are a lot of names for it. When you ask an expert to do something, they are not going to tell us about 70% of the mental operations that they have to perform to succeed in their areas of expertise. They use these operations to match patterns and when they find a problem that needs solving... to know what kind of steps to take in order to solve it. When they do this over and over again, they start to automate (John Anderson). It is not well understood generally, despite the popular books about it.

Such as Blink and other books about advanced expertise... education completely rejects the idea
they have not understood that your job in schools if you are going to promote learning you have to quickly teach people to automate so they don't have to think about it anymore. Their minds are then free to learn new things. Thats the purpose of working memory. Most of knowledge is so automated that we are not aware of it. Who teaches? Experts.

They know math, but they don't know anything about teaching. they don't even know what they know about math or any other field.

[COMMENT: IN OTHER WORDS, a math teacher is not aware of how much of his knowledge is automated. He doesn't take time to identify steps that he takes because he is unaware of his automated or hidden processes...]

Look at insights in Social Psychology.
In Social Psychology automated knowledge is not just HOW to do things, but it SHOULD you do things. It's goals and intentions. We are not in control of much of what we do, but [worse] we think we know.

That view is validated in Neuroscience. [You start by telling a person that we will ask them to make a decision, but don' t make the decision yet.] We know that if we ask a person to put up two fingers and "in a second I'm going to ask you to move one finger, but don't decide which one to move until later."....[pause] NOW, [choose the finger and] move it." They do so and when we ask the person to tell us when they decided to move which finger, they tell us "just a moment before I moved it," and we can see in the MRI scan that in fact they had decided [which finger to move] the moment they understood what the task was. They had made the decision several seconds before the moment that they had said [they made the decision.] You beleive that you didn't make the decision until just before you moved it. [They don't know.]

That's a simple task. Why get all excited about that?

It turns out that almost all decisions are the same way. most of the decisions we make, we are not aware that we are making them.

We can have very cool goals and values about what we want to accomplish and something can happen in our environment that completely changes our goals and we are NOT aware of what it was. If we do reflect on it, we believe that WE changed our minds when in fact we didn't. there is a lot of literature now on something called priming. Not so obvious features in our environment when we scan them have a huge impact on our intentions and what we do cognitively (automated).
John Bard the myth of intentionality, it made a huge splash and then nobody paid any attention to it. =========== FOR ADDITIONAL READING ++++++++++++++++
Shankar Vedantam
MAYBE? need help in transcribing

The Hidden Brain - Chapter 1 - The Myth of - YouTube

Get the papers by Dr. Clark.

► 1:52► 1:52 22, 2010 - 2 min - Uploaded by ShankarVedantamUploaded by ShankarVedantam on Jan 22, 2010. A video summary of The Hidden Brain, a book by Shankar ...
More videos for myth of intention »

[i explore the paradox that we feel that our actions have clear reasons behind them. the chapter explores experiments that show that these intuitions we have are often flawed.]
-- from the Vedantam video

============ back to the transcript ============== Unless we take in account in education that most of what CONTROLS learning is automated and unconscious, and most of what people learn is primarily valuable to them if they can turn it into an automated and cognitive motor routine. Can we do this in such a way that it can be generalizable? It's not so tied to the specific context where you learned it. That will be the biggest challenge in the next decades...

Look for "Dr. Richard Clark" for the full interview
Papers by Dr. Richard E. Clark

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