“Successfully functioning in a society with diverse values, traditions and lifestyles requires us to have a relationship to our own reactions rather than be captive of them. To resist our tendencies to make right or true, that which is nearly familiar, and wrong or false, that which is only strange.” Robert Kegan
We know that children grow in stages (for example, we’ve heard of, if not experienced, the terrible two’s). Well, according to Dr. Robert Kegan, a former Harvard psychologist, adults also transition through different stages. Becoming an adult isn’t about learning new things, it’s about transitioning into higher stages of development and maturity.
Natali Morad describes these five stages:
- Stage 1 — The Impulsive Mind (early childhood). Here the
“Learning agility: knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do.” Hallenbeck, Swisher and Orr
The following information is drawn directly from “Seven faces of learning agility” written by George Hallenbeck, Vicki Swisher and J. Evelyn Orr.
Agile Learner Qualities
Learning agility is the ability and willingness to learn from experience and then apply that learning to perform successfully in new situations.
People who are learning agile:
- Seek out experiences to learn from.
- Enjoy complex problems and challenges associated with new experiences.
- Get more out of those experiences because they have an interest in making sense of them.
- Perform better because they incorporate new skills into their repertoire.
Recent research by Korn/Ferry International has determined … Read the rest
“Ultimately, our ability to continuously learn and adapt will determine the extent to which we thrive in today’s turbulent times.” Adam Mitchinson and Robert Morris
When I first heard about agile learners, I thought they just learned more quickly than other learners. However, my research reveals that agile learners have many more qualities that are increasingly necessary in this volatile, uncertain, changing and ambiguous world.
Definition of Agile Learner
One source defines learning agility as “the ability and willingness to learn from all kinds of experience and use those lessons to perform effectively in new and different situations…an individual’s adaptability in learning new ways of coping with unforeseen problems and opportunities.”
“What was closure if not a clock? Not an end as everyone imagined, but a beginning.” Celeste Chaney
An article by Susan Landay identifies two steps needed to get closure on a learning activity:
- The Debrief—a time for processing and discussion whereby you review, experience and extract key learning points.
- The Commitment—when you consciously make the effort to commit the information to memory and, if appropriate, take action in implementing changes.
Various LinkedIn contributors offered a variety of methods to accomplish each step. I’ve culled my favorites.
For the Debrief:
- What? So What? Now What?
The focus of these questions is: What have you learned? So what, what is the significance of the learning? Now what
“Learning how to learn is life’s most important skill.” Tony Buzan
According to Amanda Moritz-Saladino, in an article most recently revised in 2017, there have been at least ten big breakthroughs in the science of learning.
- More information doesn’t mean more learning. The brain can get overloaded, so, to avoid that, we can chunk information, build on positive transfer and eliminate non-essential information.
- The brain is a highly dynamic organ. Neuroplasticity means that the brain can grow new neurons and adapt to new situations at any age.
- Emotion influences the ability to learn. Uncomfortable or stressful learning environments should be avoided because they generate negative emotions, causing the limbic system to shut off access to learning and
“Sometimes you just need words on a page to memorize.” Thomas Middleditch
If you have a memory intensive subject you want to learn, like languages or law, and you have a lot of things that you need to keep in memory, there apparently are space repetition systems. A popular one is the free open source one named Anki (which means memorization in Japanese).
This is essentially a flash card management software you can use to turn your knowledge, the questions that you want to retrieve, into flashcards. Anki will set up an algorithm to schedule in the future times to review that information so that you will ensure that you don’t forget it, and you can maintain that knowledge over … Read the rest