Systems Theory/Systems Approach to Instruction
What is a System
A system, S, is viewed as a whole made up of many parts or subsystems which are interconnected. To be considered as a system, S MUST have one or more objectives. In turn, each subsystem may itself be viewed as a system, leading to a hierarchy of systems (or subsystems). The system's parts are working together as a whole to accomplish the system's objective(s) by performing certain tasks. Ex. a computer. A system can also be defined as separate bodies coming together to form a system.
Keywords: system, subsystem, interconnection, objective
The systems approach developed out of the 1950s and 1960s focus on language laboratories, teaching machines, programmed instruction, multimedia presentations and the use of the computer in instruction. Most systems approaches are similar to computer flow charts with steps that the designer moves through during the development of instruction. Rooted in the military and business world, the systems approach involved setting goals and objectives, analyzing resources, devising a plan of action and continuous evaluation/modification of the program. (Saettler, 1990)