Wednesday, 14 August 2013 08:00

Learning Domains

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Learning Domains
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It is generally accepted that there are three broad learning domains (Pattison & Day, 2006).

While no learning happens exclusively in one domain, it is important to know which domain your learning outcome(s) are focused in. This will help you shape your instructional strategies.


Learning outcome: Learners will take the vital signs of a client during clinical rounds

Domain: it is mostly psychomotor as it is a skill they must perform, but there is probably prior cognitive learning that took place to support the learning of the skill.

Instructional Strategy: you might have students first read about how to take vital signs (cognitive), then practice on each other with instructor and peer feedback (psychomotor) and then complete it on a patient during a clinical round under supervision (psychomotor).

To learn more watch the video Instructional Strategy: Buzz Groups [11:07], in which Brad Keim instructs a group of learners on the three domains.

How does knowing the three domains help shape your instruction? Share your ideas and thoughts in the comment section below.


Lethbridge College (2013). Instructional strategy: Buzz groups [video].

Pattison, P., & Day, R. (2006). Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) Handbook for Participants. Vancouver: The Instructional Skills Workshop International Advisory Committee.

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Christie Robertson

I remember what it was like being a new instructor: too many questions and too many resources to sift through. My goal as a writer for Learning Connections is to help instructors with common teaching issues, whether they are f-2-f, blended or online. I want answers to those frequently asked question to be easy to find!