Reflections Is What Comes Out Of Your Learning Education Essay
Learning never ends and reflection is what come out of your learning. you cannot even learn from your elders, but from your Younger too. This is an ongoing process that gives you the experience and upgrades it too. A human is always known for doing mistakes but the good reflection come when he tries to learn from his past mistakes and then possibly avoid it in near future.
This assignment is any reflection on and analysis of individual that how they implement their theoretical skills into a practical one. It helped me finding the way to enhance my overall personality and get me ready for the corporate world as a professional.
When I took admission in Apiit I was of the view that I am going to have another course where I would be taught theories but it was a big surprise for me as I got to know that it is more of a practical studies and thus creating a perfect individual and shaping his career in management world.
Starting with my first class we were basically taught to learn as a team as we were given group activities which we had to perform. Our group of four includes me and three students from different region here after named A1, B2 and C3. None of us had any work experiences. I found it a little difficult for me as none we had no prior experiences but after performing a couple of these activities and getting outcomes from them we formed a good team. Then we were able to communicate in a better way with each other. We formed ideas and implemented those ideas into our daily life after analyzing them. We were not perfect in that but we learned a lot from doing all those activities as a group.
In this module Tuckman’s Group Development Model and Belbin’s Theory (figure 5a and 5b) was introduced to us to give us the real meaning of collaboration for any team work. It is to collect all the positive aspect and different skills among team members to make a definite and confirm path to success of any project. It includes four phases:
Forming means just getting started in which the members of each group were still unaware of others skills and capabilities so in this stage my group members were a little uncomfortable with others and in presenting their views. Then we moved to Storming where we tried to identify each other’s strengths and skills with an assertive view over areas of ‘expertise’. Then we moved further in Norming Stage where we became a little comfortable with each other and reconciliate ideas. There was no leader because all were learning so it was decided that the person with better idea would take the lead. In the last stage when all the group members were familiarized to each other’s behaviour and skills the sense of team work was clearer in Performing Stage.
Next we again implemented those theories to solve our problems as we were not perfect, we realised that we had to know our roles as an individual to collaborate and to organise thus we implemented Belbin’s theory (LL8) and after sometimes we realised that we need a leader that can motivate the group members to meet their objectives. As before without any group leader A1 and I spent more of our time in finding whose method is best and which approach we should take. We thought it was our ‘strength’ but it was proved as our ‘weakness’ as too much of our valuable time was spent on debating instead of doing practical things. .
Coming to communication, it is very much important when in team as it ensures the effective interaction. So for regular communication we made our group even in social networking sites. But as we were from different states we had to face many difficulties while communicating and that led to arguments and difference of views. My group members were very aggressive about their ideas and that resulted in unsuitable results for the group. This situation was very much similar to the Aristotle’s Model where one person discovers the data, analyses and delivers it to the receiver where the receiver is not taken into consideration at all. The solution for this problem was to introduce Berlo’s SMCR Model for effective communication, where the suitable data for the activity is to be translated in a way that it is easily understood by the receiver. The two parties need to be on the same level in terms of message encoding and decoding. This activity enabled us to reflect one where we went 'wrong' and what we should have done.
At the same time, we came to know the presenter of data needs to know their position when sending out a message, so the receiver would not feel intimated by the message.
Our next work was to evaluate Blooms Taxonomy to classify a person learning style. Being in a group we discussed our potential learning style and its effect on our group, and then with the help of some questionnaire we tried to quantify our learning style through reflection on experiences, thus we got to know our loop holes and made some changes to our learning process to ensure further development.(3a,3c) from assessment we came to know that we were emphasising on being “pragmatics”. I was very much convinced by the result as it was shown that my team was looking into things from a real-life point of view. There came the synergetic effect that produced better result altogether.
Learning and Development
Learning is the process by which new behaviors are acquired. It is generally agreed that learning involves change in behavior, practicing new behaviors and establishing permanency in the change.
The development provides knowledge and understanding to individuals so as to enable them function more effectively in organizations through problem-solving, inter-personal relations & decision-making.
For further learning and development we were introduced to the Honey Mumford learning style. I found most of us were fallen in the category of activists and pragmatists (learning log 4). Activists are the people who adapt thing as it comes; they just react on the situation without having any backup for their failure. While pragmatists are those who prefer practical compared to theoretical ideas to understand something. We then discussed our results to check its accuracy and that was quite accurate, especially when compared to the Belbin’s test result. I was also able to conclude and convince myself that Honey Mumford learning styles has a similarity to my characteristics in the team.
Towards the end of the module, the group’s communication level in the team improved as each of us become accustomed to each other's skills and communication styles.
According to Steven Covey “Once time is gone it can never be back”, this is to say that we should make good utilization of available time by prioritizing our tasks according to urgency and importance. For the class activity, (learning log 9 - 13), we realized that as a manager, it is essential to manage time wisely. When a manager is able to manage the time wisely; the management or board will be able to trust him with their funds and resources. From this activity, I learned to prioritize our tasks. Urgent tasks are those that have a deadline as the task that has higher priority and under a limited time constraint. Important tasks are tasks that can wait due to not having a tight schedule and deadline to complete within. Thus less time was spent on simpler tasks which can be left for last.
Hallam (1996) indicates that a group that has avoided conflicts at all costs will not be able to "critically evaluate itself and the work" so a little time was also given to manage conflicts as there were not much conflicts excepting in the beginning that was solved out. It safe guarded us from blaming each other for the failures instead of taking responsibility.
To conclude with learning in a team throughout this module proved that people can work as a group or rather as a team as long as there is a clear understanding among them about their roles as an individual and their commitment level to achieve certain goal as a whole. There must be a leader who can get things done by others by convincing them and improving the overall performance by receiving feedback. More importantly, it gave me an opportunity to see how the group forms, communicates and develops.
This module proved that small but incremental improvements, through review of mistakes and achievements, can produce positive changes, and that this action was actually called 'reflection'. It enhanced my communication and confidence.
Finally, I would to say that to have a maximum output from what you learn, you must enjoy learning. As we got closer to the end of this module, I realized that we were actually taught how to utilize the resources to become a better manager. As a manager it is very essential to make optimum use of the limited resources that will be provided for ones task. At the same time, a manager should also have equivalent skills and make sure his/her employee is up to the mark to gain better competitive advantage and a higher market value for the purpose of development and success of the organization. For a manager, a department with the lowest staff turnover is always better for the management and shows the excellence of the manager managing his/her team.
ASSIGNMENT 2 “LEARNING"
Learning is a relatively permanent change in behavior that occurs as a result of a prior experience. It defines a person’s character and his way of absorbing the things. According to Kolb 1984, “learning is the process whereby knowledge is created through the transformation of experience. Knowledge results from the combination of grasping experience and transforming it.”
I learned many things from different learning theories like from Belbin’s theory I came to know that I was more of a coordinator and team worker where as from The Honey Mumford styles it was very clear to me that I was a strong activist and stronger pragmatist. We assumed many results and for that we did self assessment through questions, my outcome was almost right while for others it was a little different. Finally we came to know that in our group we had all the roles from The Honey Mumford (activist, reflector, theorist and pragmatist).
Then we evaluated the VARK learning style that confirmed that I was a reading/writing preference learner followed by visual and kinesthetic learner. Concluding all the learning theories in one, I found myself a person who learns better from real life practices and experiences compared to learning through class lectures and theories. For example, whatever I learned was better absorbed by me when I implemented and performed them in real through tutorial and lab activities.
Anticipates new experiences
Enjoy doing what they act upon
Doesn’t always get to implement everything they learn
No 2nd thoughts on implementation
Implements theory to practical activities
Gets impatient with lengthy discussions
Read – Write
Rewriting notes gets registered better
Able to translate charts & diagrams into own words
No proper balance of implementation for lessons learnt
Activist is one who always anticipates new experiences to do something as it comes but they fail to realize that they need not to implement everything as all the data cannot be learn trough experiences. An activist never thinks upon the result of their actions. They just act without having any backup for their failure.
A pragmatist learns best when theories are implemented to a practical activity. For example, one can learn riding bicycle only by practicing to ride it and not by only reading instructions on how to ride one.
As different theories defined my personality differently I believed that I should develop a particular learning theory including the others I learned. As according to the VARK assessment there is no harm in learning new theories.
We were also came across many development programs formal and informal both that included reading articles, discussing plans with peers and seniors. These activities ensured more practical implementation of theories. Performance reviews and appraisals were also included in that development plans.
After doing all these activities I could safely say that my learning style was almost changed as from practices to experiences. I had an idea that I should take a step back and look in deep of anything to see how others have done it before taking any “calculated risks” and once I have experienced the task I could reflect what was the result to change or improve the method to suit my style as circumstances could not be changed so I had to change my learning style somewhere. Honey and Mumford indicated that learning styles can be changed at will depending on the circumstances (Coffield et al, 2004).
As I had to change my style of learning I took self assessment questionnaire designed by DON Clark and then I found and agreed that I fall in the list of “Theorists”. My further analysis told that “self assessment” in the self assessment is not always true but as a learner I had to learn and experience all phases of learning styles so that I could fully understand the ins and outs of any particular subject as it was said one cannot learn riding a bicycle just by reading about it.
In my opinion in any difficult situation you are left alone and it depends entirely upon you to decide the best course of action. So I felt that I had to experience the hard part of reality and had to reflect on the result of it and had to find a way then by putting it into test I had to prove that what I expected to be the result was right. In this many a times I failed but i learned a lot even from those failures.
As my previous learning style was quite different from this usual “reflector-theorist” style as I had no real life experience. I decided to gain more knowledge through readings of academic materials and journals and finally I tried to implement my skills onto a case study. This was an additional improvement to my personality which was easily achieved by using QCC tool.
Then I had a different view of QCC, previously I just knew the meaning of it but now I could apply its measurements that were required but it was not the important part the thing which was important to me was that I could now use the basic process of QCC to improve my personality and my standard in near future as well.
After all the above learning style that I learned or even implemented I felt it a little incomplete without proper guidance of skilled people. This lead me to my next level of learning and that was “People Management and Development” (PMD). Being a group member it was very much important to me to communicate with my group members without any hurdles but before this learning style was introduced I was a little less tactful in handling conversation but I learned to communicate with others in an easy manner.
If I would be given a chance to reflect on my learning styles on communication I would definitely summarise the key to good communication as –keep it simple. This learning activity provided me additional tool to improve my personality in fact it also enhanced my previous knowledge by their implementation in real practices. It also cleared out all my doubt and misconception, misunderstanding, which I used to do before getting onto this learning module. Connoly (2008) has indicated that in adult learning, we aspire to become a better self by developing our potential and always challenging ourselves.
To conclude by being at a safe side I can happily reflect on my learning style to be all different and providing me overall development as all the styles were some where inter connected so it was a revision as well as a practice too. Having gone through this module has made me aware that we must go through each step of the learning process in order to fully experience the matter
These experiences were all 'action learning', defined by Krystyna Weinstein (1998) as "a way of learning from our actions, and from what happens to us, and around us, by taking the time to question, understand and reflect, to gain insights, and consider how to act in future".
Previously I used to learn through theory and thus I was unable to find a solution to a problem as most of the time I used to refuse to face the challenge. It has become better now as I try to look into things and do it by myself o understand it better. I attribute this reluctance as part of my somewhat introvert character and the reluctance to make mistakes in the past.
We had to do many analyses like SAQs and the SWOT analysis that made me think of better vision and to have a good mission statement to define a particular path in life. I could make plans for my future growth and was able to achieve them. (6)
In the beginning I had to face some of difficulties as in these analysis and the personal development plans to work, I had to be honest with myself it contributed unconsciously to enhance my self confidence too. I fully agree with the following statements John and Patricia Robson, of Higher Awareness Inc. (n.d.), make on their home page that "…you need to know yourself" because "you will never be happy until you start living the truth." This is because of an unconscious "self-sabotaging" belief that most people do not know it exists.
In the final stage the things were clearer to me; I took many Self assessment programs that are the first steps towards knowing ourselves better. Don Clark's SAQ that I took to determine my learning style is an example for me to know myself better.
Finally, a quote from Robert H. Goddard, recognized as one of the fathers of rockets, as I see that it summarizes my reflection and actions I need to take:
“Each must remember that no one can predict to what heights of wealth, fame or usefulness he may rise until he has honestly endeavored, and he should derive courage from the fact that all sciences have been, at some time, in the same condition as he, and that it has often proved true that the dream of yesterday is the hope of today and the reality of tomorrow.”- Goddard, R., 1904. (Gainor, C.,2008)
CHARTS AND FIGURES
OUR GROUP LEARNING STYLE
Figure 3a: The evaluation of the group learning style through the assessment of the individual styles.
TEAM DEVELOPMENT PROCESS
Figure 4: The transition curve of a team's effectiveness (Sheard & Kakabadse, 2004)
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Log (8) – Team Development (Part 2)
Group development model by Bruce Tuckman:
The getting to know stage. focusing on group identity and purpose, sticking to the safe behavior
Resistance, lack of participation, conflicts
Reconciliation, relief, information and ideas are shared
The ability to effectively balance and produce a task as a team
Sadness of the group’s ending, recognition of team and members efforts
2 intervals added
Dorming (from storming)
The team becomes dormant after conflicts
Tribal (from performing)
The team becomes cohesive and forms its own interest group and shut others out
Belbin’s Team Roles
Coordinator (chairman, clarifies goals)
Plant (solves problems)
Shaper (challenges, pressures)
Monitor – Evaluator (sees all options, judges)
Resource Investigator (explores options)
Team worker (listens, builds team spirit)
Implementer (turns ideas into action)
Completer – finisher (searches for errors, perfectionist)
Identify each team member’s roles. Which team role is missing from the team? How did this affect the team? How did the team manage the missing attributes?
Lessons I learned:
Harsha => Resource Investigator and Plant
Hamed => Co-ordinator and Implementer
Jan => Co-ordinator and Implementer
Me => Co-ordinator and Team Worker
Substituted by the activists in the group, who contributed as much as they could
Monitor – Evaluator
Group members played their own roles as monitor-evaluator during brainstorming sessions
Substituted by the variety of skills and knowledge that other group members have
Completer – finisher
Non applicable role as class activities often had a start and end time for tasks
The Belbin’s test turned out to be accurate as we shared the results among one another and discussed it. The test made us realize that we could depend among one another for leverage to accomplish given tasks.
Log (9) – Time Management (Part 1)
Time wasters are those who –
Attempt too much
Not saying no
Management by crisis
How to manage time efficiently
Do not be a perfectionist
Resist the temptation to do small and insignificant tasks perfectly
Outsourcing work is strongly encouraged
List down what was done on Friday and Thursday. Then, identify the hours spent on leisure and work.
Shopping for Party
Preparation for Party
Cleaning the house
Relaxing with snacks
PG evening class
Leave for home
Lessons I learned:
My working hours have taken a full part of my daily weekday schedule hence utilizing the weekends and public holidays to the max
Attention should be paid to mild daily exercise as the right balance of work and play should be there
Log (12) – Time Management (Part 4)
The six steps for time management are as below:
Connect to Mission
Do SWOT Analysis
Connect with vision & mission (what is most important? What gives your life meaning? What do you want to be and do in your life?
Identify your roles: Responsibilities, relationships, areas of contribution
Select Quadrant 2 goals for each role
Organize weekly / monthly activities
Exercise integrity of the moment. Should I carry out my plan or make directed changes?
Evaluate: did I achieve my goals? What decisions did I make? What challenges did I encounter?
I realized that there is a need to specify my mission/vision and have a clearer view of the entire situation.
Enables me to set priorities according to the roles I play.
Make the most of strengths
Honey and Mumford Questionnaires
Assessing Your Learning Style
For each of the questions below select whether you "Agree" or "Disagree". When you have completed this select the "Analyse" button to identify your learning style preference. The test can be repeated by selecting the "Reset" button.
The questionnaire is based on the Honey & Mumford Learning Styles Questionnaire (LSQ)
Top of Form
I often take reasonable risks if I feel it is justified
I tend to solve problems using a step by step approach and avoid any fanciful ideas
I have a reputation of having a no-nonsense direct style
I often find that actions based on feelings are as sound as those on careful thoughts and analysis
The key factor in judging a proposed idea or solution is whether or not it works in practice
When I hear about a new idea or approach I like to start working out how to apply it in practice
I like to follow a self disciplined approach, establish clear processes and logical thinking patterns
I take pride in doing a methodical job
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