Individual Self-Directed Learning Behaviors: A Measure, Model, and Field Experiment Examining How Working Adults Learn.
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CitationRigolizzo, Michele. 2017. Individual Self-Directed Learning Behaviors: A Measure, Model, and Field Experiment Examining How Working Adults Learn.. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard Business School.
AbstractIndividual self-directed learning is learning that is in the hands of the learner and requires sustained active engagement. Although self-directed learning has proven to be both powerful and critical to working adults’ ability to develop their careers, little is understood about how self-directed learning occurs as employees face performance demands in their day-to-day work. This dissertation presents a behavioral measure, a process model, and a large-scale field experiment to deconstruct self-directed learning into five key learning behaviors of taking on a challenge, attending to information, forming meaningful connections, repeated practice with feedback, and critical reflection. It empirically tests how and when working adults engage in those behaviors while meeting performance demands. Chapter 1 uses a newly developed Learning Behaviors Measure to test the relationship between a key driver of learning - learning orientation – and each of the five learning behaviors. It reveals that learning-oriented individuals are more likely to take on challenge but not more likely to follow through on the behaviors needed to meet that challenge. Chapter 2 expands these five key behaviors into a model of long-term self-directed learning to posit that all five behaviors are required for long-term learning, that there is an optimal order to the behaviors, and that any one individual is unlikely to freely engage in all five behaviors. One particular behavior that seems difficult for learners to maintain in the long-term is reflection. Therefore, Chapter 3 presents a field study that shows that a simple intervention of allowing employees to see past reflections motivates them to reflect in the future.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:40620141