Every year I am asked how we learn from some of these tools. This is usually by those who hold very traditional beliefs about how learning takes place – ie. that it only occurs in a formal training or educational setting where there is a transfer of knowledge between an educator or instructor and an individual – and a conscious effort on both parts!
But of course learning happens everyday in many different ways and contexts – as I have shown in the (free) introductory section of my online resource MODERN WORKPLACE LEARNING. In fact I have identified 4 key ways we learn, that I call the 4 D’s of Learning:
- We learn through DISCOVERY – that is by finding things out for ourselves (mostly on the Web) through purposeful searching or serendipitous browsing or to solve performance problems (aka informal learning)
- We learn through DISCOURSE – that is by connecting and interacting with others – through conversation or collaboration (aka social learning)
- We learn from DOING the day job and from everyday work activities and experiences (aka experiential learning)
- We learn through DIDACTICS – that is by being taught or trained or through independent study (aka formal learning)
But more than this we don’t learn equally from each of the 4 D’s. In fact the results of a survey of well over 10,000 people shows that only around 14% of what we learn happens in formal learning situations, ie DIDACTICS, whereas 21% comes from DISCOURSE, 32% from DOING, and 33% from DISCOVERY. Any tool that can enable learning in any of these contexts can therefore be termed a tool for learning.
So the graphic below shows the context in which of each of the top 100 tools is PRIMARILY used – which is then an indicator of how learning can be fully supported in order to provide a holistic approach to learning and development – click for a downloadable PDF.
- DISCOVERY – tools and platforms that an individual uses to find out things for themselves
- DISCOURSE – tools and platforms that can underpin interaction and collaboration between individuals
- DOING – tools and platforms that are used as part of daily (work/life) activities – and through which individuals can learn as a by-product of those activities
- DIDACTICS – tools and platforms that can be used to create, deliver, host and manage formal learning experiences as well as for independent study
Note: this doesn’t mean that the tools can’t be used in a number of context – for instance (1) a video meeting tool (DISCOURSE) can be used to host both meetings (DOING) and training sessions (DIDACTICS), and (2) a YouTube video (DISCOVERY) can be used in the workflow to support performance (DOING).
Read more about MODERN WORKPLACE LEARNING and discover the 3 complementary Guides for Individuals, for Managers and for L&D.
Last updated: August 31, 2022 at 12:59 pm