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Reflections on the workplace as a learning environment Dr Maggie Roe-Shaw Presented at the Australian Evaluation Conferenc...
Overview of presentation <ul><li>What is workplace learning? </li></ul><ul><li>The role of workplace learning </li></ul><u...
Presentation outcomes <ul><li>Another view of workplace learning </li></ul><ul><li>Another view of learning organisations ...
What is workplace learning? <ul><li>“ the formal acquisition of skills and knowledge in the workplace”  (Tertiary Educatio...
The role of workplace learning <ul><li>Shift in thinking of workplace learning as a cost to seeing it as an investment </l...
What are learning organisations? <ul><li>Learning organisations are changing organisations because they: </li></ul>Create ...
So learning organisations… <ul><li>Have a learning culture that enables them to: </li></ul>Are better able to anticipate c...
Living learning organisations…… <ul><li>“ The essence of organisational learning is the organization’s ability to use the ...
Professional socialisation: organisational learning <ul><li>Professional socialisation  provides an individual with the kn...
Traditional work vs. knowledge organisations  (adapted Despres & Hiltrop, 1995) Skills and knowledge sets Narrow, function...
Evaluative management culture <ul><li>How do we monitor and evaluate the effectiveness and efficacy of workplace learning?...
Creating learning opportunities at work Formal education as a learning opportunity Can be in-house, university papers or c...
Facilitating and promoting learning at work PRACTICE SITUATED EXPERIENCE IDENTITY  AND CULTURE SOCIAL STRUCTURE SOCIAL THE...
Monitoring and evaluating learning effectiveness <ul><li>Top managerial buy-in and commitment to evaluative thinking about...
Concluding thoughts <ul><li>Workplace learning seeks to create a learning system which incorporates the needs of the indus...
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Reflections On The Workplace As A Learning Environment

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Reflections On The Workplace As A Learning Environment

  1. 1. Reflections on the workplace as a learning environment Dr Maggie Roe-Shaw Presented at the Australian Evaluation Conference in Darwin, Northern Territory 2007
  2. 2. Overview of presentation <ul><li>What is workplace learning? </li></ul><ul><li>The role of workplace learning </li></ul><ul><li>What are learning organisations? </li></ul><ul><li>What place an evaluative management culture in workplace learning? </li></ul><ul><li>- Creating learning opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>- Facilitating and promoting learning at work </li></ul><ul><li>- Monitoring and evaluating learning effectiveness </li></ul>
  3. 3. Presentation outcomes <ul><li>Another view of workplace learning </li></ul><ul><li>Another view of learning organisations and organisational learning </li></ul><ul><li>The value of knowledge organisations </li></ul><ul><li>The use of an evaluative management culture to assess effectiveness and efficacy of workplace learning </li></ul><ul><li>Creating learning opportunities at work </li></ul><ul><li>Approaches to enhance the timing and focus of evaluation studies to inform effective workplace practices that facilitate workplace learning </li></ul>
  4. 4. What is workplace learning? <ul><li>“ the formal acquisition of skills and knowledge in the workplace” (Tertiary Education Commission NZ, 2004) </li></ul><ul><li>Creating sustainable new knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding workplace learning are becoming more clearly linked to the development of knowledge workers and learning organisations </li></ul><ul><li>Is the recognition that learning occurs through activities and experiences in the workplace </li></ul>
  5. 5. The role of workplace learning <ul><li>Shift in thinking of workplace learning as a cost to seeing it as an investment </li></ul><ul><li>Changes in the organisational structure of tasks in the workplace to ensure: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Improvement in current job </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improve quality of goods or services </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Respond to new technology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop a more flexible workforce </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improve employee safety in the workplace </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(Smith, 2000) </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. What are learning organisations? <ul><li>Learning organisations are changing organisations because they: </li></ul>Create useful knowledge for the organisation Disseminate this knowledge effectively Use this knowledge to improve organisational effectiveness
  7. 7. So learning organisations… <ul><li>Have a learning culture that enables them to: </li></ul>Are better able to anticipate change Respond and adapt to change more quickly Perform better and survive longer than organisations that do not learn so well
  8. 8. Living learning organisations…… <ul><li>“ The essence of organisational learning is the organization’s ability to use the amazing mental capacity of all its members to create the kind of processes that will improve its own” (Dixon, 1994) </li></ul><ul><li>“ Organisations where people continually expand their capacity to create the results they truly desire, where new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured, where collective aspiration is set free, and where people are continually learning to learn together” (Senge, 1994) </li></ul>
  9. 9. Professional socialisation: organisational learning <ul><li>Professional socialisation provides an individual with the knowledge, motivation and ability to play a defined role in their workplace </li></ul><ul><li>Organisational socialisation provides a process for individual’s to learn the values, norms, and required organisational behaviours, to participate as an effective member of that organisation. It occurs throughout the individual’s career in the organisation </li></ul><ul><li>Occupational socialisation provides a process to identify what others in their occupational group learn and how they learn it </li></ul>
  10. 10. Traditional work vs. knowledge organisations (adapted Despres & Hiltrop, 1995) Skills and knowledge sets Narrow, functional and prescribed Specialised, flexible, diverse and with diffuse foci Focus of work Tasks, objectives and performance measures through formal policies, systems and practices Client/customer focussed where informal practices, symbolic actions and evaluative beliefs, values and attitudes are important Performance measures Length of employment, loyalty to the ‘firm’ Professional development, continuing education Career prospects Rising through the organisation through seniority and miles on the clock External to the organisation with best practice in organisational culture change
  11. 11. Evaluative management culture <ul><li>How do we monitor and evaluate the effectiveness and efficacy of workplace learning? </li></ul><ul><li>Evaluative management culture in workplace learning is where the organisation has a culture whereby both policy and program managers in the development and implementation stages of workplace learning integrate evaluation into the organisational culture (Ryan, 2003) </li></ul>
  12. 12. Creating learning opportunities at work Formal education as a learning opportunity Can be in-house, university papers or courses, undertaking research, distance learning Self-directed learning as a learning opportunity Reading journal articles, updating knowledge via the internet or library Opportunities within the job as a learning opportunity Coaching mentoring, peer review of practice, job rotation, involvement with the wider organisation, project management work, supervision, reflection on day-to-day practice, informal discussion with colleagues, secondments Opportunities outside the job as learning opportunity Job rotation, visits to other centres/sites, conference presentations, secondment
  13. 13. Facilitating and promoting learning at work PRACTICE SITUATED EXPERIENCE IDENTITY AND CULTURE SOCIAL STRUCTURE SOCIAL THEORY OF LEARNING
  14. 14. Monitoring and evaluating learning effectiveness <ul><li>Top managerial buy-in and commitment to evaluative thinking about workplace learning including: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Organisational structure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Resourcing and planning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to influence decision making </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Organisational performance measurement strategies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Turning findings into action </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Communicate the importance of evaluation: the relentless pursuit of the truth about quality </li></ul>
  15. 15. Concluding thoughts <ul><li>Workplace learning seeks to create a learning system which incorporates the needs of the industry, the organisation, the division and the individuals within the organisational culture </li></ul><ul><li>Work has to become learning and learning has to become work </li></ul><ul><li>Work and learning are not synonymous: they are different concepts </li></ul><ul><li>Learning organisations that have a workplace learning culture are more likely to have a workplace that improves performance (Smith et al, 2002) </li></ul>
  16. 16. Comments or questions?

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