The importance of shortening a sequence to avoid sequence interference problems was emphasized in Tip #13. In addition, it helps to change the sequence. The very beginning and ending of any training segment is most ripe for learning. Therefore, you may want to begin with the most difficult or complex 2-5 items or steps, when the participants are most ready to learn, and then teach the easier items. Or, in order to build the learners’ confidence, you may want to start with the easiest items or steps, and end with the more difficult items. After the items or steps have been learned, they can be placed into their natural or necessary order for future practice and performance.
Sequence is one of the four properties of learning that Dr. Madeline Hunter of UCLA identified in her Mastery Teaching Model. The three other properties are meaning, previous practice, and relationship. They will be discussed in future Tips.