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Critical Learning Incident

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Critical Learning Incident The critical learning incident that I wish to address is not at university or college but at my place of work. It happened the year before as well, but it occurred again due to new changes implemented at work and also I was not at work during the year until now. The learning incident that occurred is learning to use the new computer system at work. The year before was the same however I was rarely using the system so there wasn't much to learn, also the system from last year has changed. This year I have been given more responsibilities and authority in using the new system, which is different from the year before. Normally it is expected that you learn from a book on how to use the system, but like majority of the staff at work, it was much easier to learn by observing others. The learning incident is not just one incident but a series of incidents; this is because my manager started to give me more responsibility and authority in which came more learning on using the new system to do things such as; till lifts, returns, exchanges and cashing up. I noticed that I preferred learning by watching others than by reading from a book, as I tried at first to learn from the book but it was of no use. ...read more.


This I have learnt by 'observational learning' which was very important for me because dealing with customers is one of the utmost priorities when working in a retail outlet. The social learning theory was devised by Bandura, emphasises the importance of observing and modeling the behaviors, attitudes, and emotional reactions of others. Bandura (1977) states: "Learning would be exceedingly laborious, not to mention hazardous, if people had to rely solely on the effects of their own actions to inform them what to do. Fortunately, most human behavior is learned observationally through modeling: from observing others one forms an idea of how new behaviors are performed, and on later occasions this coded information serves as a guide for action."2 Bandura believed that observational learning, (which can also be known as imitation or modelling) has four component processes that influence the observer's behaviour following exposure to models. These components include: attention; retention; motor reproduction; and motivation.3 The first step known as 'attention' means; in order for an individual to learn anything, he or she must pay attention to the features of the modelled behaviour. Many factors contribute to the amount of attention one pays to the modelled activities, such as the characteristics of both the observer and the person being observed and competing stimuli. The second step known as 'retention' means if an individual is to be influenced by observing behaviours he or she needs to remember the activities that were modelled at one time or another. ...read more.


As previously mentioned, I did not now of my 'certain way of learning' until I undertook the module 'Adult Learners and Learning', before this I did not think of any theoretical assumption regarding my learning style in any field that I am associated with (whether it is at university or at work). Now that I have not only understood my way of learning but also wrote a critical account on it, I feel that I understand myself better. I can now reflect on my learning with enthusiasm knowing that I understand the way I learn things and this can only help me learn more and make my learning more efficient. To conclude, the critical incident was related to my place of work. Learning of new skills and techniques were the core of my critical incident. Theories such as observational learning/social learning theory by Bandura and Dewey's 'learning by doing' were both looked at in relation to my learning incident. Fortunately for me, because of the fact that I now understand the way I learn in different surroundings, this can only help me further towards my goals. This incident in conjunction with the critical incident report has changed the way I approach certain learning situations as I know have the knowledge of my certain learning style to apprehend certain situations, with this I can learn more quickly and efficiently, benefiting me and those around me. Reference Cox, E., Psychology for A Level, Oxford University Press, 2001 http://www.nvc.vt.edu/alhrd/Theorists/Dewey.htm http://www.criminology.fsu.edu/crimtheory/bandura.htm http://tip.psychology.org/bandura.html http://www.funderstanding.com/observational_learning.cfm 1 http://www.funderstanding.com/observational_learning.cfm 2 http://tip.psychology.org/bandura.html 3 http://www.criminology.fsu.edu/crimtheory/bandura.htm 4 http://www.nvc.vt.edu/alhrd/Theorists/Dewey.htm ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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