How Learning Works: Some fundamentals that can improve all communication, learning, research and teaching practices.

fill brain??

A one-hour interactive seminar / workshop was prepared for graduate students and post-docs & research associates. Our goal; virtually any professional or academic communication involves someone learning something from someone else; maybe even everyone learning something! What fundamentals about how people learn are well established? And – how can we leverage those basic concepts to improve research, teaching, professional communication and even our own on-going professional development?  In this hour, we discussed some fundamental concepts, including:

  • Distinguishing novices vs. experts;
  • Influence of prior knowledge (or lack of it) on learning;
  • Motivation: can learning happen without it?
  • Practice and Feedback; a crucial, iterative cycle, but how best to do it?

Two files with supporting material are attached to this post:

  1. The slides used to drive our discussion, and
  2. Two page handout with space for jotting down notes at 4 points within the hour, plus a preliminary reference list.

To follow up or ask questions, please contact Francis Jones.

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