Silva, Polly M.
07 November 2007
The study explored incidental learning in the workplace. Three research questions guided the study: 1. What is the nature of incidental learning in the workplace? 2. How does professional context impact incidental learning? 3. How do incidental learners know they know in the workplace? A series of three interviews were done with seven human resource professionals and with seven engineers following Seidman's phenomenological interview protocol. The first interview focused on the participant's life history concentrating on the context of the participant's early learning experiences and their professional choices. The second interview provided details of the participant's current incidental learning experiences and an example of their current professional tasks. The third interview provided an opportunity for the participants and me to explore the meaning of their experiences. Analysis of individual experiences was done via profiles, and an analysis of thematic findings was done across all participants. Findings showed that in the "lived world" the experience of the participants and the nature of incidental learning is mediated by the individual's conception of learning and by the individual's learning style. At a professional level, frames and reflection-in and on-action further guide the focus of and validation of the incidental learning. For the researcher -- and perhaps for co-workers or for participants themselves -- incidental learning is easy to overlook; lessons learned often appear to be simply common sense after the fact. This may, in part, be due to the fact that the stories of incidental learning ultimately had successful outcomes. This study confirmed and expanded the importance and impact of context on incidental learning, showing how the elements of an individual's personal and professional context also impact incidental learning. Recommendations for future research and implications for practice were provided. Recommendations for future research included: replicating the study to explore incidental learning in more professions and to explore of the impact of formal higher education on incidental learning. Process recommendations include studying incidental learning as an adjunct to other studies of organizational learning and as a part of an action research project. These methods allow the researcher to study the construct indirectly and as it happens. / Ph. D.
A study of the relationship between the National Vocational Qualification in administration and personal developmentBaldridge, Glynis Marjorie January 1998 (has links)
No description available.
28 March 2011
The purpose of my research is to describe and analyze the facets of the learning culture in one non-profit organization. Based on my reading, I define a learning culture as: the observable and unobservable processes, structures, norms, and communication patterns that support ongoing, work-related, learning for employees. I relied on Schein’s (1985, 1992, 2004) levels of culture theory to guide my study. Schein posits that culture must be explored at three levels: “artifacts” (observable symbols and structures), “espoused beliefs and values” (the articulated ideologies of the organization), and “underlying assumptions” (the unconscious beliefs that are shared amongst members of a group). Accordingly, I selected a three-phase qualitative approach to provide a rich description of one organization’s learning culture. Using semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and document analysis, I investigated the firm’s learning culture. I targeted two groups: organizational representatives and employees. I further divided my employee group into two subgroups: administrators (management) and frontline employees (those who provide direct care for clients), in order to glean a broad perspective of the learning culture and how different groups perceive that culture. My research allowed me to describe the organization’s culture of learning. I uncovered a mismatch, however, between the organization’s espoused values regarding work-related learning and the employees’ perspectives on their learning. The organization articulates that it actively promotes and encourages learning for its employees; yet, the employees perceive their learning to be supported, but not readily encouraged. I tentatively conclude that perspectives on learning seem to be a function of employee role. This study offers some insight into the challenges of investigating an organization’s culture, both theoretically and methodologically. / Thesis (Master, Education) -- Queen's University, 2011-03-27 09:20:58.606
Magister Commercii (Industrial Psychology) - MCom(IPS) / The study examines three emerging salient themes. Firstly, it highlights the current perception of informal learning in the workplace which has multiple definitions and descriptions. The second theme draws attention to the sociocultural structures and the impact on individual engagement in workplace learning. The last theme illustrates the potential of informal learning and how individuals and their learning environment at work cannot function independently. Employees no longer have time for the inefficiencies of the past, old-style training they want to be co-participants in learning not simply receivers (Cross, 2007).By diagnosing the current status of informal workplace learning, the research examines the employee engagement, the perceived factors that affect learning engagement and explores the links between informal workplace learning and the performance of the organisation. Against the background of informal learning in the workplace, a learning organisation has been characterised, as an organisation that has development in place that supports learning and recognises the value of learning and extends itself towards the enhancement of employee’s proficiency and transfer of learning to others (Berg & Chyung, 2008).
Workplace learning experiences of TVET college candidates in learnership programmes : an exploration of the workplace learning environmentVollenhoven, Gerald January 2016 (has links)
Philosophiae Doctor - PhD / Skills development policies in South Africa and further afield consider learning in and from the workplace as critical to the training of artisans at intermediate level. Since the inception of democracy, South Africa has become part of a globally competitive economic arena where highly skilled workers capable of engaging with new technology in a changing environment are increasingly required. Continuous innovation, it is held (Kraak, 1997), is dependent on the presence of two knowledge forms in society and work: an abundance of formal (scientific and technological) knowledge, and skilled worker 'know-how' or tacit knowledge. In the present system of technical and vocational education, theoretical learning and some practical skills are obtained in institutions, mostly in the recently renamed TVET colleges, while job specific training occurs through prescribed periods of work placement. In light of common assumptions about the value of workplace learning, this research was concerned with exploring whether, and how such learning is taking place. It sought to understand the methodologies, practices, and affordances available to learning in the workplace, from the perspective of candidate apprenticeship/learnership students. To this end this study employed a qualitative approach for investigating how candidates experienced and interacted with the 'real world environment' of the workplace. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with a purposively selected sample comprising candidates engaged in programmes that necessitated a workplace learning component, namely, the apprenticeship and learnership in fitting and turning, motor/diesel and the auto electrical trades. Data analysis was undertaken using both Atlas ti software and manual methods for coding and identification of themes. Lenses used to describe and explain learning in the workplace included the conceptual frameworks of Engestrom‘s (1987) Activity theory; Vygotsky‘s (1978) notion of learning via the 'expert other' within a Zone of Proximal Development; and Lave and Wenger‘s (1991) theorising of situated learning in Communities of Practice. This triangular juxtaposition of complementary theories formed a richly informative explanatory system for my further exploration. As a qualified artisan myself I was familiar with the negative connotations of a historical 'sit by Nellie' approach, a phrase used to caricature the way apprentices learned in the past, by simply being passive observers of the experts. However, my findings were to reveal a vastly different picture of learning in this modern, visual and tactile age. Learners in this study experienced a range of learning modalities, methodologies and affordances that were reported in 'thick' descriptions, building a vivid picture of engagement and interaction. In addition to the abundance of learning opportunities candidates experienced, their responses revealed the indisputably central role played by 'expert others' in moving them towards competence – the expert artisan emerging as the quintessential didactic practitioner. This thesis proceeds to highlight the experiences of candidates on their learning journey in the workplace, and suggests recommendations in respect of these. Key learnings are distilled, which ultimately point to the need for collective effort in appreciating and retaining for the benefit of future generations of artisans, the mentoring potential that exists in our expert artisans wherever they may be found.
This thesis explores the way General Practice trainees and early career General Practitioners describe their training environment in General Practice, the meaning they attach to the notion of preparedness and their perceptions of the impact of the training environment on their preparedness. The study was informed by the interpretivist paradigm. I conducted 27 in-depth semi-structured interviews with 15 early career General Practitioners and 12 General Practice trainees at the end of their training. Interview data were transcribed and analysed thematically, drawing partially on the grounded theory approach of data analysis. Interviewees described their training environment in terms of their sense of being included in the Practice, the Practice ethos, the importance of training within the Practice, the trainer and their relationship with the trainer. There was no unanimous way in which interviewees talked about preparedness, however the meanings attributed to preparedness centred around two central elements ‘confidence’ and ‘adaptability’ and included: working independently and being self directed; knowledge of business and partnership issues; ability to manage patients and workload; good consultation skills and effective time management; and adequate knowledge and passing the RCGP CSA examination. The way the training Practice can impact on trainees’ preparedness was explained drawing on Bandura’s theory of ‘self efficacy’ and Lave and Wenger’s theory of ‘situated learning’. Inclusive training Practices, characterised by less hierarchical relationships between the doctors, particularly vis-à-vis trainees, were better at preparing trainees for their future role by affording them greater opportunities to take part in a wider range of General Practice work. The role of the trainer was also pivotal in preparing trainees through effective teaching. Supervision tailored to trainees’ needs, and guided decision making enhanced confidence of trainees in their ability to work independently.
Korpan, Cynthia Joanne
19 September 2019
Through an exploratory qualitative, interpretive frame that employed an ethnographic methodological approach, this research focuses on teaching assistants (TAs) teaching in a lab, tutorial, or discussion group. Nine TAs share their learning journey as they begin teaching in higher education. The theoretical lens that frames this research is workplace learning. Interviews, observations, video-recordings, field notes, and learning diaries were subjected to thematic analysis, looking for dominant themes associated to TAs’ characteristics, their learning process related to teaching, and the knowledge they developed about teaching and student learning. Key findings include the recognition that TAs bring robust conceptions and dispositions to their first teaching position that is approached from a student subject position as they are becoming teachers. As TAs are being teachers, they control their self-directed learning process as they make decisions on-the-fly within a diverse learning environment that ranges from expansive to strategic to restrictive affordances. Coupled with a discretionary reflective practice, TAs’ knowledge development about teaching and student learning is solely dependent upon their experience, making forthcoming development of knowledge about teaching and student learning relegated to chance. This focus on TAs’ learning in the workplace illuminates the need for a deep learning approach to learning about teaching and student learning that needs to begin with graduate students’ first appointment as a TA. In addition, this deep learning approach needs to be encased in an expansive learning environment that provides opportunities for continuous support through various forms of mentorship, instruction, and development of reflective practice. / Graduate
Barley, Karen L. III
27 April 1998
By exploring the historical development and current state of the corporate university through literature reviews, case study analyses, and interviews with corporate university practitioners, this study conceptualizes the corporate university. The shortage of knowledgeable workers in technical areas and rapid advances in technology have energized adult learning in the United States. In response to these changes and needs, many corporations have incorporated formal learning programs into their organizations. As conceptualized in this study, the corporate university is Corporate America's vehicle for providing learning programs to their workers with the goal of developing and maintaining a highly skilled, knowledgeable, and adaptable workforce that contributes to organizational performance. Through an historical development and conceptualization based on interviews with corporate university practitioners and case study analyses, this study also examines the strengths and weaknesses of the corporate university. The corporate university does, in fact, provide a useful and innovative way to reach a portion of the adult learning population. Moreover, the corporate university provides learning initiatives that are related to the adult's current and future role in the workplace. In this way, the learning opportunities provided by the corporate university make the knowledge relevant and accessible to the adult learner. However, the corporate university is not founded on adult learning principles and is chartered to consider corporate success rather than individual development. This purpose endangers the corporate university in that it has the potential to exploit the American workforce by forcing undesired learning opportunities. This study identifies a basic component, partnership, that helps many corporate universities avoid employee exploitation and provide learning opportunities that have meaning to both the individual learners and the organization. The partnership component is foregrounded in a model for program development that is presented in this construct for future and current corporate university planners. The model is not tested in this thesis; however, it has been reviewed and endorsed by a panel of corporate university experts. Provided that partnership is considered and integrated into the approach, this study concludes that the corporate university, as a conceptual and an interactive model, is a useful vehicle for reaching the adult learner and for preparing and maintaining an American workforce able to manage change and remain competitive. / Master of Science
Emerging identities: practice, learning and professional development of home and community care assessment staffLindeman, Melissa Ann Unknown Date (has links) (PDF)
This thesis argues for greater recognition of assessment staff in community care/home and community care (HACC) and a more comprehensive and considered approach to preparing such a workforce. By offering deeper insights into the practice of assessment and the individuals employed in these positions, the thesis makes the case that these are emerging identities: a new specialism in the emergent space of community care. This specialism has arisen to fill the gap which has developed as a result of changing socio-cultural practices in relation to care for the frail aged and people with disabilities, and the inability of established disciplines to keep pace with the new demands of the contemporary world. / The study employed a qualitative methodology using in-depth interviews with key informants with various stakeholder interests and expertise in the area of assessment and home and community care, and workers employed in assessment roles in HACC services in Victoria. The conceptual framework is represented as theoretical perspectives from current adult educational scholarship that focus on professional disciplines (including multidisciplinary/interprofessional perspectives), those that focus on communities of practice, and those that focus on the workplace. / The thesis shows that HACC assessment workers are a product of contemporary workplaces and systems of health and community care. The nature of their practice derives substantially from the local contexts in which they work; there is no single profession or discipline-based narrative that drives their practice. Instead they draw from a diverse range of knowledge sources including their embodied practice. In this way, it is argued that they are emergent practitioners, whose practice and identities share many elements with traditional professions in comparable work contexts (similar levels of autonomy, reflective practices, and development and application of ‘know how’ and tacit wisdom). The case is put that their embodied practice is the site of a robust professionalism which can provide the foundation for new approaches to the education, training and development of this increasingly important and growing occupational group. A model of learning is proposed which builds on authentic learning attained in daily work activities with clients, in the workplace as a social setting, and developing the self as a resource for practice. This model is based on a hybrid approach that builds on the learning strengths of both educational institutions and the workplace.
Johnsson, Mary Chen
Work in organisations is a shared and joint endeavour often accomplished by groups, teams or other collectives. Yet groups at work do not always learn at work, limiting an organisation’s capability to thrive in knowledge economies. Research investigating collective learning at work continues to place the analytic focus on entities or abstractions representing the collective. For example, culture, power, group membership, group structure, group communications, motivations and skills are often examined to explain why groups learn or not in organisations. In contrast, this thesis investigates what it means to learn together when people act, talk and judge at work through their relational and responsive interactions. This relational orientation conceptualises learning as emerging from patterns of interactions that are responsive to local contexts and shaped by practical sensemaking that occurs in the everyday practice of work life. Specifically in the case study interpretive tradition, I investigate the relational practices of dyads and small groups in three disparate organisational contexts and professions. The organisational, group and individual characteristics differ widely for musicians in an orchestra, apprentice chefs in a commercial kitchen and rehabilitation staff in a corrections centre. Yet these three groups shared relational similarities in learning how to weave ways of acting, talking and judging together to make their work ‘work’. Such weaving together is enabled by shifting conceptually from notions of context as descriptive setting or situatedness to the notion of groups contextualising together. This thesis contributes to collective learning research by highlighting the significance of patterns of interactions and the dynamics of practice. The findings enhance existing collective learning theory by including spatio-temporal concepts from theories of organisational change and complexity. The findings have implications for guiding the learning of commencing practitioners into professions as well as for generating modes of transdisciplinary learning across professions. Re-viewing collective learning in relational ways recognises that learning is an emergent phenomenon, each time practised anew from interactions between people and the possibilities that lie within. The Latin prefix con means with. It seems appropriate that concerts performed by musicians, condiments added to dishes by chefs and the consequences of behaviours by corrections staff across diverse contexts of work can provide practical insights for better understanding how groups learn collectively at work.
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