Here are the principles of instruction stated by Bruner: (来源：http://www.EnglishCN.com)
Instruction must be concerned with the experiences and contexts that make the student willing and able to learn (readiness).
Instruction must be structured so that it can be easily grasped by the student (spiral organization).
Instruction should be designed to facilitate extrapolation and or fill in the gaps (going beyond the information given).
Discovery learning refers to obtaining knowledge for oneself. Teacher arranges activities that students search, manipulate, explore, and investigate. Students learn new knowledge relevant to the domain and such general problem-solving skills as formulating rules, testing and gathering information. Most discoveries are not lucky occurrences. Students require background preparation (the well-prepared mind required declarative, procedural, and conditional knowledge). Once students possess prerequisite knowledge, careful structuring of material allows them to discover important principle.
The teacher encourages students to discover principles by themselves. The teacher and students should actively discuss issues and concepts (i.e., socratic learning). The teacher must translate information to be learned into a form appropriate to the learner's current state of understanding.
Bruner (1966) states that a theory of instruction should address four major aspects:
predisposition towards learning, the ways in which a body of knowledge can be structured so that it can be most readily grasped by the learner, the most effective sequences in which to present material, the nature and pacing of rewards and punishments.
Good methods for structuring knowledge should result in simplifying, generating new propositions, and increasing the manipulation of information.
Not all educators or theorists are as enthusiastic as Bruner about the use of discovery methods in school. Reception learning , a relatively mild controversy pitting discovery teaching, has been going on in educational circles for several decades.
Edward L. Thorndike (1874-1949)
"The mind is man's connection."
Edward L. Thorndike was born in Williamsburg, MA in 1874. He studied at Wesleyan University and Harvard, and became professor at Teachers College, Columbia (1904-40), where he worked on educational psychology and the psychology of animal learning. He did pioneer work not only in learning theory but also in education practices, verbal behavior, comparative psychology, intelligence testing and the application of quantitative measures to sociopsychological problem. His works include Psychology of Learning (1914) and The Measurement of Intelligence (1926).
Edward L. Thorndike's Theory:
The learning theory of Thorndike represents the original S-R framework of behavioral psychology: Learning is the result of associations forming between stimuli and responses. Such associations or "habits" become strengthened or weakened by the nature and frequency of the S-R pairings. The paradigm for S-R theory was trial and error learning in which certain responses come to dominate others due to rewards. The classic example of Thorndike's S-R theory was a cat learning to escape from a "puzzle box" by pressing a lever inside the box. After much trial and error behavior, the cat learns to associate pressing the lever (S) with opening the door (R). This S-R connection is established because it results in a satisfying state of affairs (escape from the box). The law of exercise specifies that the connection was established because the S-R pairing occurred many times (the law of effect) and was rewarded (law of effect) as well as forming a single sequence (law of readiness). As a result of studying animal intelligence, he formulated his famous "laws of learning".
Law of effect
This law states that the strength of a connection is influenced by the consequences of a response. Before 1930, Thorndike believed that pleasurable consequences strengthened a connection and annoying consequences weakened a connection. After 1930, however, he believed the only pleasurable consequences had an effect on the strength of a connection.
Law of exercise
This law states that the strength of a connection is determined by how often the connection is used. It contains two portions: law of use-the strength of a connection increases when the connection is used; law of disuse-the strength of a connection diminishes when the connection is not used.
Law of readiness
This stated that when an organism is ready to act it's reinforcing for it to do so and annoying for it to do so. Also, when an organism is not ready to act, forcing it to act will be annoying to it.