The idea of learning has evolved greatly over the last few decades, moving from class-based, trainer-led programs to flexible, learner led, blended learning programs and the 70:20:10 framework.
While we can debate whether there are in fact different learning styles, or what is the most effective form or method learning, and what qualifications or skills you need to be an effective trainer, it is important to remember, that learning comes in many forms, in fact, learning happens everywhere.
What is common in all discussions about learning methodologies or modalities, is that WHERE or HOW a learner finds their information, inspiration is far less important than them participating in the process of learning.
It could be suggested that learners are savvier than they once were, or perhaps it’s just that learners today have greater access to information, with smartphones, podcasts, YouTube, Facebook and so on, learners no longer need to go to the library to research or gain this information from a trainer or lecturer. Learners can now learn anywhere, anytime and they do; often enhancing the learning process for themselves and others as they can now easily comment, debate and challenge the information that was once presented in a training room, from what was considered the single source of truth. As a learning professional we are no longer the single source of truth (and many would agree, perhaps we never were!)
Our role as L&D Professionals is to help learners access the information and provide them inspiration to learn, how and when they need. Our goal is to facilitate behaviour change through learning – whether it is a new skill, a new way of working, or simply exposing learners to new ideas that empower them to explore further.
Interestingly, as the industry changes and we acknowledge the importance of learner-led training, we are still spending a significant amount of time with our clients and stakeholders focusing (debating?) on the WHERE or HOW information can or will be shared with our learners.
More than ever it’s becoming important to provide learners with a flexible approach, so they can experience learning in many ways, individually, in groups, and in their own time.
So perhaps, learning has always come in many forms; today, we just have greater access to it.