www.MarcusBall.com

Marcus Ball Contact Site Index
 
What is Learning? ] Theories of Learning ] References ]
Authority & learning ...


Up

Systems & Conversation
Authority & learning
Bloom’s Taxonomy
Imitation
Learning & Teaching System
The Learning Curve
Learning how to Learn
Situational Learning
Resistance to Learning
Tacit knowledge

Past Employment

Residential Property Management Community Manager PPA
Residential Property Management Assistant Manager, Leasing  HVA
Online Technical Account Manager
Massage Therapy Clinical Therapist
Telecom Products Sales Executive
ASP Support Client Services
Inquiry Center CRM Specialist
Call Center Design Engineer
Help Desk Desktop Support
Call Center Client Communications
Hospitality Reservations Manager
Sales Special Orders
Retail Commercial Ast Manager

Or Read:

http://logotherapy.univie.ac.at/
indexE.html

http://www.geocities.com/Athens/
Parthenon/4942/negcap.html

http://www.uwe.ac.uk/bbs/
trr/Issue3/Is3-2_1.htm

Resume
Customer Centricity
Ethics

Authority and learning

A great deal of learning takes place in a social context, whether that be the family or the classroom or the work-group (hence social constructivism and situated learning). It is thus subject to social pressures which, while they may not appear directly relevant to the subject matter to be learned, influence underlying attitudes and perspectives affecting motivation, the value and priority to be given to academic work, and so on. This page refers to three classic studies in this area:

 

Defining the Situation

T S Eliot claimed that "mankind cannot bear very much reality" (I thought of amending that on the grounds of sexism, but then my partner told me it was exactly right). Be that is it may, neither sex can bear much ambiguity or meaninglessness. Frankl built a whole school of psychotherapy on "Man's (there it is again) search for meaning". John Keats spoke of the need to cultivate "negative capability" or the ability not to jump to conclusions, a theme later taken up by W R Bion. But this desire to find an "answer" is very strong, and can easily lead to inappropriate learning.

McHugh's (1968) fascinating and frequently amusing book recounts an experiment in which subjects were introduced to a supposedly new form of counselling. They were told that the counsellor who would be working with them was very skilled and very wise. They were invited to describe a problem or dilemma to the “counsellor”, whom they could not see and with whom they could only communicate by intercom., and to ask ten questions, each of which had to be capable of being answered with a “yes” or a “no”. After they had heard the answer to each question, they should reflect aloud on what they made of it, before formulating the next question. What they did not know was that the “counsellor” was simply an experimenter working down a predetermined list of randomly-generated “yes” and “no” answers. The transcripts of the “interviews” show how the subjects struggled to make sense of the answers they received, and how few of them realised or were prepared to concede that the entire process was meaningless. Moreover, a considerable proportion reported that the experience had been helpful in clarifying their problems! 

Original content updated and hosted at www.learningandteaching.info/learning/

Marcus Ball ] Contact ] Site Index ]