Project Description

The intended audience of this e-learning module is voters who every four years have trouble understanding why 270 Electoral College voters, and not, as in 2020 the over 140 million voters, determine who the President will be.  Particularly, as has happened five times in the past, the 270 people elect someone who did not win the popular vote.  According to the Washington Monthly (July 2020), polls show as many as 81% of Americans support eliminating the Electoral College in favor of the national popular vote.   Harvard historian, Alexander Keyssar, has identified over 1000 efforts to reverse or abolish the electoral college.   All have failed in part because a constitutional amendment is intentionally difficult to pass, requiring supermajorities in both branches of Congress and the state legislatures, and because different interest groups have mobilized over the years to oppose change for partisan reasons.

Standards Met

This project demonstrates proficiencies in the following AECT standards: Standard 1 – Content Knowledge, Standard 2 – Content Pedagogy, and Standard 3 – Learning Environments. The chart below illustrates the performances that fulfill the AECT standards.

AECT 2012 Standards

Standard 1 – Content Knowledge: Candidates demonstrate the knowledge necessary to create, use, assess, and manage theoretical and practical applications of educational technologies and processes.
Performance indicators: Justification
1.1 Creating. Candidates demonstrate the ability to create instructional materials and learning environments using a variety of systems approaches. 1.1 An instructional solution on understanding the Electoral College was created in accordance with ADDIE design paradigm
1.2 Using. Candidates demonstrate the ability to select and use technological resources and processes to support student learning and to enhance their pedagogy. 1.2 Adobe Photoshop, WordPress, HTML5, Quiz Maker, and PowerPoint were used to create this course.  Students could access the course using any device with internet access.
Standard 2 – Content Pedagogy: Candidates develop as reflective practitioners able to demonstrate effective implementation of educational technologies and processes based on contemporary content and pedagogy.
Performance indicators: Justification
2.1 Creating. Candidates apply content pedagogy to create appropriate applications of processes and technologies to improve learning and performance outcomes. 2.1 I have studied the constitution extensively and taught several short courses on the electoral college and have used HTML and Photoshop for years.  I used WordPress to acquire a new skill.
2.2 Using. Candidates implement appropriate educational technologies and processes based on appropriate content pedagogy. 2.2 I used technologies I had experience with and learned new technology, along with the instructional design paradigm of ADDIE and Mayers Multimedia Learning.
2.4 Managing. Candidates manage appropriate technological processes and resources to provide supportive learning communities, create flexible and diverse learning environments, and develop and demonstrate appropriate content pedagogy. 2.4 The material in the learning objects is presented in a logical order the builds on previous sections.  I received valuable feedback from people who took the class and incorporated their suggestions.
2.5 Ethics. Candidates design and select media, technology, and processes that emphasize the diversity of our society as a multicultural community. 2.5 There was no direct cost to students taking the class as most people already have a computer and internet access or can use one at the library.  The content was designed with voters in mind without consideration of their demographics.
Performance indicators: Justification
3.1 Creating. Candidates create instructional design products based on learning principles and research-based best practices. 3.1 This learning object incorporates the cognitive theory of multimedia learning principles described in Multimedia Learning, 2nd edition by Mayer, and Multimedia Learning Theory by Jenlink.
3.2 Using. Candidates make professionally sound decisions in selecting appropriate processes and resources to provide optimal conditions for learning based on principles, theories, and effective practices. 3.2 This project was created based on ADDIE design and Richard Mayer’s multimedia learning theory.  The goal of this project is for students to understand the electoral college and its’ constitutional foundation.  The only technology that did not require the students to download anything or have anything other than access to the internet was used.
3.5 Ethics. Candidates foster a learning environment in which ethics guide practice that promotes health, safety, best practice and respect for copyright, Fair Use, and appropriate open access to resources. 3.5 All resources used are correctly cited.
3.6 Diversity of Learners. Candidates foster a learning community that empowers learners with diverse backgrounds, characteristics, and abilities. 3.6 This course was designed for students without regard to ethnicity, religion, color, or characteristics.

Modifications Made

Objective 1

  • Re-wrote quiz questions that were confusing.
  • Added graphics to each section of the constitution in lesson 1.
  • Removed a question that was not covered by the lesson.

Objective 2

  • Corrected a quiz answer that was incorrect.
  • Added definition for “faithless elector”.  I had used the term without defining it.
  • Only one of the three instructional goals I had listed was covered by the class so I removed the other two.

Objective 3

  • Corrected quiz answer that was incorrect.
  • Increased discussion questions link to a larger font.
  • Increased the size of navigation links to make them clearer.