What is learning and how to support it? prof. Kari Smith
What is Learning?
How can we supportit?
Professor Dr. Kari Smith
29 Oct. - 3 Nov. 2017 Zagreb, Croatia
Outline of my talk
Learning processes- cognitive
Learning processes- affective
How can feedback support learning
Teaching for the future
Conclusions-by wise people
When do you know thatyou
How can you define your own
Please share a significant
learning experience with
Learning Conceptions of Learning
Learning asthe intake of information
(knowledge is fixed, transmitted from the
teacher to the learner)
Learning asknowledge building (knowledge is
personal, to be constructed by the learner. This
can also take place in dialogue with others.
Learner is responsible. Teacher is a coach.
Learning as utilizing knowledge
Theories of learning
•Behaviorist (small unities, hierarchy,
knowledge can be measured)
•Cognitive- constructive (individual, learning
strategies, meta-cognition, knowledge is
constructed by the learner)
•Socio- cultural (interactive, dialogue, learning
together with others, knowledge isconstructed
in dialogueswith others)
I will notinstructmy students
until they have really tried hard,
butfailed to understand.
He who learns, butdoes notthink
is lost. He who thinks, butdoes
not learn, is in greatdanger.
Some wise words
Confucius (551-479 BCE)
Learner types (Dweck, 2000 among others)
P erception of Intelligence
Entity, static Dynamic
External motivation Internal motivation
C ontrol A utonomy
P erformance goals Learning goals
P raise Reality
A void challenges Face challenges
Decrease in achievements Increase in achievements
“Self-regulated learning is an active
constructive process whereby learners set
goals for their learning and monitor,
regulate, and control their cognition,
motivation, and behaviour, guided and
constrained by their goals and the
contextual features of the environment”
(Pintrich & Zusho,2002, p. 64)
• Goals, expectations, strategy planning,
assessment of own competence
2.performance, volitional control
• during the learning activity, choice of
• Critical analyses and evaluation
This can be
Zimmerman, 2000 Kari Smith
Goal setting means creating a dissonance
between the current competence and a wanted
When learners are goal oriented, want to achieve
a goal, the dissonance isexperiencedas a
positive dissatisfaction with the current
competence whichmotivates goal oriented
actions (Robinson, 2007)
Goals learners set:
Kari Smith Kari Smith
Goals in learning situations:
Price paid in:
If the price is too
high, learners do
Students can only achieve a learning goal if they
understand that goal and can assess what they
need to achieve it (Sadler, 1989; Black and Wiliam,
Learners become actively involved in deciding
assessment approaches, developing
assessment criteria, rubrics, and are invited
to assess their own work as well as thatof
There is a change of focusfrom the
final goal (but not forgotten) to the
process needed to achieve the goal.
Create optimal learning situations
1.Clear, concrete goals
2.Ongoing feedback and feed forward
3.Optimal balancebetween competence
and challenge(positive dissatisfaction,
4. Remove distractive factors
5. Clear rules
Chiszentmihalyi, 1997, Knoop, 2002 Kari Smith
Champions have a goal
To reach that goal they were willing to pay a
The price we agree to pay to achieve
something is our motivation!
The more attractive the goal, the higher the
Motivation is the driving force to all activity!
Motivation is the price w are willing to pay to
achieve a goal!
The more attractive a goal, the higher the
price we are ready to pay.
Myth: All motivation is a pleasantfeeling!
Motivation – a complex concept
Internal motivation requries:
• Self being the reason for action
• Free choice (without pressure)
• Real action alternatives
• General competent in meeting with the environment
• Competent related to a certain domain
Deci & Ryan, 2000
2.Avoid self-determined sanctions
• Guilt, shame
• pride, self-respect
• Instrument to achieve something
Deci & Ryan, 2000
Has do with intentions and actions.
Maarten Vansteenkiste, Leuven says:
Motivation is to explain why you do whatyou
Are you pressed into it(controlled)?
Have you chosen to do it(autonomy)?
Self-efficacy is"the belief in one’scapabilitiesto
organize andexecute the courses of action required
to manage prospective situations."
In other words, self-efficacy isa person’sbelief in
his or her ability to succeed in a particular situation. .
Self-efficacy (Bandura, 1977)
Students who believein theirown abilty to do a
specific task,meetchallengesand work harder and
longer to succeed.
Self-efficacy isrelated to:
• Previousexperienceswith similar taks
• By observing others
• Support from significantothers
• A clear understanding of the task
• A clear understanding of what is needed
Improvisation in teaching
Teaching aboutlearning how to learn
Teaching for the future
What does it mean?
The skill and imagination to create new things
(Webster on-line dictionary)
• creativity is moving away from “artiness”, individual genius and
• rendering it economically valuable, team- or community-based,
observable and learnable (McWilliam, 2007; McWilliam, Dawson, & Tan,
Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi (2006, p. xviii,) ‘creativity is increasingly held
to be “no longer a luxury for the few, but . . . a necessity for all”
Bakhtin: Dialectic learning
• To raise new questions, new
possibilities, to regard old problems
from a new angle, requires creative
imagination and marks real advance in
• The true sign of intelligence is not
knowledge but imagination.
Improvisation: Knowing-to actin the moment
in response to the immediate environment
Knowing-to act when the moment comesrequires
more than having accumulatedknowledge-about.
It requires relevant knowledge to come to fore
so it can be acted upon (Mason & Spence, 1999, p.139).
Seven principles of developing the
skill of improvisation
1. Trust among the ‘players’
2. Acceptance of new ideas, exploration
3. Attentive listening
4. Spontaneity- co-create in the moment
5. Storytelling- creating a collaborate
6. Nonverbal communication of attitudes
The true teacher defends his pupils against his own personal
influence. He inspires self-distrust. He guides their eyes
from himself to the spirit that quickens him. He will have no
disciple. ~Amos Bronson Alcott
The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The
superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher
inspires. ~William Arthur Ward
A teacher's purpose is not to create students in his own
image, but to develop students who can create their own
image. ~Author Unknown
Some wise words