Monthly Archives: November 2016
Everybody has a different approach to learning and the more we understand about the type of learner we are, the more effective our studying should become.
Howard Gardner first introduced us to the idea of Multiple Intelligences in 1983. He believes that there are several types of intelligences that can’t be simply defined from one IQ test. He categorises intelligences under the following headings;
1. Verbal linguistic – having a good verbal memory, being interested in words and how language works
2. Analytical / logical – being able to investigate and have a scientific approach to learning
3. Musical – being sensitive to sounds and rhythms
4. Visual spatial – being imaginative with a good visual memory
5. Kinaesthetic – being receptive to touching objects to enhance your memory
6. Interpersonal – being good in group work, listening to others
7. Intrapersonal – being aware of your own personal goals and motivations
8. Naturalist – understanding the link between nature and humans
It’s important to understand that these intelligences work together and it would be unwise to think of ourselves as having only one or the other. Labelling learners as a particular type of learner could stop them from exploring all of their intelligences. So instead we should think of ourselves as having dominant intelligences.
When you are next in a classroom ask yourself these questions to think about how you learn:
- When I hear a new word do I need to see it written down to know how it’s spelt?
- Am I interested in grammar and how English tenses are put together?
- Are my notes kept neatly in a methodical way?
- Do I keep a personal dictionary of newly learnt words?
- Does my personal dictionary help me to remember the words?
- How easy do I find it to hear differences in sounds?
- Does drawing pictures of new words help me to remember them in English?
- Does touching an object help me to remember what it’s called?
- Do I enjoy listening to the teacher and taking notes?
- Do I prefer working on my own or with other people?
- Do I know why I’m learning English?
This list of questions is obviously limited but it’s a good start towards becoming a more effective learner. The more you are aware about your dominant intelligences in the learning process the more you can exploit them to make learning a more enjoyable and rewarding journey.
The most important changes are often the least obvious. That’s especially true in business, where changes are taking place on a greater scale than ever before. The advent of digital technology has brought a number of these dynamics to the forefront. They can be thought of as principles. Like Moore’s law or Murphy’s law, they explain the way the world works.
If you’re in business in the 2010s, an understanding of these five principles is crucial, because digital disruption is quickly becoming the new normal. Many growth strategies that may have worked well in the past no longer pack a punch. The principles help explain not just what will happen to your company next, but why.
Turing’s theory of computability: Machines can calculate any of the ever-growing number of problems that are possible to calculate. In the 1930s and 1940s, the English mathematician Alan Turing (whose life was dramatized in the 2014 thriller The Imitation Game), made some pathbreaking observations about computability and its ramifications. He identified what he called “computable” activities: any task that a theoretical machine (in this case, a mathematical model with a process similar to a computer) can address. Having determined that computability can be identified mathematically, Turing then postulated that machines have the capacity to perform computable tasks as well as human beings can. In his e-book Introduction to Computing: Explorations in Language, Logic, and Machines, University of Virginia professor David Evans devotes a chapter to computability. “A problem is computable if it can be solved by some algorithm,” he explains. “A problem that is noncomputable cannot be solved by any algorithm.”
Achievement is what you have done of significance at work which has benefited your company or organisation. Think about your work achievements. Or even your life achievements – these are the successes that you have had so far. Perhaps you have just passed your driving test, or maybe after many years of trying, you have learnt to swim. This is an achievement as it is something you have worked hard for, and in the end the results have been successful.
Why is this important?
In our lives it is important to have objectives so when you have reached them you can say you have some achievements. Think about when you were younger, and your ambitions. Maybe you wanted to become a doctor, so you studied hard, and you finally became a doctor. Perhaps you wanted to have a house with a big garden. Can you remember the day you fulfilled this dream? These are personal achievements and they give you the feeling of self-satisfaction, confidence, and happiness. Let us now take a look at your work achievements. When you have achievement at work it means that you are working towards goals normally set by others, but they can be set by yourself, too. Perhaps you have to reach a sales target, or you need to complete a project within a deadline, or perhaps you need to see clients or customers and help them in some way. If you succeed in helping them, or you reach your sales target, or you complete your project by the deadline, you have examples of achievements. Striving for achievements shows determination and tenacity.
How can you show you have this competency?
If you have a job interview and you want to demonstrate your achievements you need to think about different situations you have been in, the actions you have taken, and the results of these actions. Perhaps you have had a difficult customer, how have you dealt with that person? Did your action benefit your organisation? In what way? If your results were successful, state this either in your job application, or in your interview.
Think about the skills which you have which make you attractive and valuable as an employee. Remember the more achievement you can give as examples, the more you can sell and market yourself for the job.
How to improve this skill
If there is a goal which seems difficult to achieve, don’t give up easily. If you can understand your goal and work towards it this will show that you have the potential to achieve. You need to be able to face obstacles and be determined enough to meet targets. Think about a time where you have had to take “no” for an answer, did you just accept it? Don’t just accept it, find out why the answer is “no”.
Also ask for feedback as this can give you an indication of how you are doing. You could compare this to learning a language, for example, if you find some grammar difficult you can always ask your teacher for feedback on your exercises. You can apply this rule to the workplace as well and if you are not sure of how you are progressing, ask!