David Ausubel : Meaningful Learning Theory

National Autonomous University of Honduras
Faculty of Humanities and Art
School of Foreign Languages and Cultures
Foreign Languages Career
Msc. Rosa Oneyda Palacios Gámez
Group 16
Bessy Mendoza
Any Herrera
Indira Torres
David Ausubel
Meaningful Learning Theory
Born: October 25, 1918
Died: July 9, 2008
Grew up in Brooklyn, New York
He graduated from medical school at
Middlesex University.
Later he earned a Ph.D in Developmental
Psychology at Columbia University.
He was influenced by the work of Piaget.
In 1973, Ausubel retired from academic life and
devoted himself to his psychiatric practice.
In 1976, he received the Thorndike Award from the
American Psychological Association for "Distinguished
Psychological Contributions to Education".
Meaningful Learning Theory
Concerned with how
students learn large
amounts of meaningful
material from
presentations in a learning
Meaningful learning results
when new information is
acquired by linking the new
information in the learner’s
own cognitive structure
Learning is based on the
superordinate and
combinatorial processes
that occur during the
reception of information.
A primary process in
learning is subsumption in
which new material is
related to relevant ideas in
the existing cognitive
structure on a non-verbatim
basis (previous knowledge)
The processes of meaningful learning:
Ausubel proposed four processes by which
meaningful learning occur:
Derivative Subsumption
Correlative Subsumption
Superordinate Learning
Combinatorial Learning
Meaningful Learning Theory
Derivative Subsumption
Describes the situation
in which the new
information pupils
learn is an instance or
example of a concept
that pupils have
already learned.
Correlative Subsumption
More valuable
learning than that of
subsumption, since it
enriches the higherlevel concept.
Meaningful Learning Theory
Superordinate Learning
In this case, you
already knew a lot of
examples of the
concept, but you did
not know the concept
until it was taught to
Combinatorial Learning
It describes a process by
which the new idea is
derived from another
idea that is comes from
his previous knowledge
(in a different, but
related, “branch”)
Students could think of
this as learning by
Principles of Ausubel’s Meaningful
Reception Learning Theory
Within a classroom setting include:
 The most general ideas of a subject should
be presented first and then progressively
differentiated in terms of detail and
 Instructional materials should attempt to
integrate new material with previously
presented information through comparisons
and cross-referencing of new and old
Principles of Ausubel’s Meaningful
Reception Learning Theory
Instructors should incorporate advance organizers when
teaching a new concept.
Instructors should use a number of examples and focus
on both similarities and differences.
Classroom application of Ausubel's theory should
discourage rote learning of materials that can be
learned more meaningfully.
The most important single factor influencing learning is
what the learner already knows.
For Ausubel, meaningful learning is a process that
related new information relevant to the concepts
contained in a person’s cognitive structure.
In order to be meaningful to students ‘learning, then
learning should be linked and relevant to students’
cognitive structures.
Relevance to students’ cognitive structures can
happen when we pay attention to early knowledge
of the concepts that preceded the concept to be
It is important for students to construct knowledge
through learning.
The essential theory of meaningful learning is a
teaching which Ausubel enables students can
associate the beginning of knowledge with new
knowledge that will learn and how teachers can
facilitate learning by preparing the facility as a
presentation of the subject matter which allows
students to build knowledge in discovery learning

similar documents