Is self-directed teaching effective

How self-directed learning succeeds

How you can make it easier for your employees to learn in their day-to-day work

Develop your strategy today, learn new tools and methods tomorrow (also for home office etc.), train your intercultural skills the day after tomorrow. Not only since Corona has our working life been confronted with important challenges that cannot be mastered with formal learning opportunities such as face-to-face events at fixed dates. Often it doesn't take much for that, as only little things have to be learned or brushed up. Here, for example, short learning units at the workplace (microlearning) are ideal. Especially since learning and work are growing closer together: Lifelong learning is essential nowadays. One factor that should not be overlooked is the half-life of knowledge. In almost all areas, knowledge declines faster and faster, which makes it all the more important to bring yourself up to date quickly. Self-directed learning can be a good support. Without deadline pressure and with your own preferred methods, the required knowledge is learned when it is needed.

Definition: what is self-directed learning?

Self-directed learning, often also called self-directed learning, is understood as a form of learning in which the learners design and control their learning process themselves. This is done using various learning formats such as e-learning, learning groups, projects or learning-on-demand offers. The learners use the existing didactic scope for decision-making, design and action. Learning objectives, learning content and learning strategies are determined by oneself, time and place are determined, learning sources and / or learning partners are chosen, learning resources are organized and the learning process or success is reflected on. The learners determine the methods and tools themselves. The responsibility for self-directed learning therefore lies with the learner. The more all these possibilities are used effectively, the more self-directed the learning process.

Create the conditions for self-organized learning

In order for self-responsible and self-directed learning to work, you have to create the right conditions. Self-directed learning requires different things: The learner needs motivation, cognitive performance and the conviction that they can solve problems. Personality traits such as the ability to act in a future-oriented manner, self-reflection and curiosity or goal orientation also have a positive effect on the ability to self-directed learning.

On the other hand, the disadvantages are high stress and too much pressure in everyday work. Many learners therefore need support to develop the following competencies as a prerequisite for self-directed learning:

  • To be able to take the initiative to learn
  • Recognize your own learning needs in order to formulate your own learning goals,
  • organize resources for learning,
  • to choose a learning strategy that fits your personal profile and
  • to evaluate and reflect on their own learning process.

In addition, everyone learns in different ways. Some need the exchange in groups, while others learn best with texts and diagrams. That is why a distinction is made between four types of learning:

The auditory The best way to absorb learning content is by listening to the learner. It is easy for him to find information such as B. to save and retrieve from the classroom teaching.

The visual Learner learns best through text work, but graphics and diagrams also help him to store information.

The communicative Learner type can best absorb knowledge by exchanging ideas with others, having discussions and asking questions.

The motor Learner learns through courses of action that he carries out himself. Learning by doing helps him to understand connections and to find solutions.

By means of self-directed learning, employees can decide for themselves which format is most effective for them and orient their learning accordingly.