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Ed Jones' review of representations

Review of 4SPPIces model and CADMOS

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Edward Jones
4 April 2013

4SPPIces model and CADMOS

Their ‘Readability’

4SPPIces : I found this model fairly easy to understand as it used a simple, visual design, although it also housed the ability to include quite a lot of detail, if one so wished. The tabs for the four different components allowed for easy access to the detail of each component, with the final script design tab bringing it all together.

CADMOS : Being a graphical-based method it was very easy to see what the overall plan was for both the conceptual model and the flow model. It was clear to see what activities were involved, who was involved and what resources were involved. The 'swim lanes' also made sense of the phases and timings involved.

Their Expressiveness

4SPPIces : The fact that the 4SPPIces in LDshake has tabs for the 4 factors involved means that each factor can be described in detail and therefore provides a broader understanding of each activity. The 4 components then fit together to express the whole design.

CADMOS : The CADMOS model uses 2 separate models to express the activities and the resources (conceptual model) involved and how the activities are organised (flow model). The conceptual model expresses the activities in terms of the resources used, whilst the flow model expresses the activities in terms of roles and timings. Any detail involved has to be expressed via metadata, which may be less convenient for some.

Their Utility

4SPPIces : This model could be seen as combing academic and technical aspects of the design. It may not be the model of choice for everyone as it may not provide the overall view that everybody wants; there is no clear provision for a timeline in the final script design and no obvious area to display aims or skills to be developed. Being a web-based model of course, allows sharing of ideas and collaborative work on a design, which is probably its most useful feature.

CADMOS : For those happy to use two separate models within a design, CADMOS provides an easily read, graphical view of how resources are mapped to activities and how the activities are arranged in time. On the surface this lends itself well to an overview of a design, but to include detail within the model one has to get to grips with metadata, which may prove frustrating and time-consuming. Of course this tool was developed to describe electronically supported lessons and so has limitations; there is no description for face to face scenarios and an activity may have only one goal, for example.

Could these models be used to represent my learning design from activity 1b?

I feel that my learning design could easily be represented by the 4SPPIces model, with the detail listed within the separate tabs, forming the overall script. The greatest benefit for my design would be the detail included to separate out all of the actions taken over time, the methods and the spaces used. It would bring greater structure to the plan I actually followed. The CADMOS model would be less straightforward to use, as I feel it would be a little too simplistic in terms of its graphical portrayal of events, but also too fiddly to define each resource using metadata.

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Kirendeep Jagdev
6:32pm 3 May 2013


After reading this I can see that the 4SPPIces model offers great expressiveness being new in this field and having the 4 different areas to build on which may allow for greater thinking and a bit more robustness around design, from reading this as I looked at CADMOS and its limitations I would definitely consider the 4SPPIces model from your comparison.

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