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Personal and Professional Development Essay

1-Abstract In essence, this report will comprise three parts: first we shall be making an evaluation of current approaches to self- managed learning, second we shall be detailing in which ways lifelong learning both personal and professional might be promoted and encouraged and finally we shall be making an evaluation of the potential benefits of self-managed learning to organisations and their members but for this case with specific reference to Teagasc.

2- Introduction Every single person had one day some experience about self-managed learning in their life, or many people are having this experience at the moment in somewhere learning something by themselves. Stop for a moment and back to the past and try to remember if you have learned something that you had initiative by yourself. Did you remember something? I am sure you did, do you know why? It`s because there`s so many reasons which push ourselves to learn something and that`s why the term self-managed learning is more popular when compared with the traditional way to learn, for example going to the school every day.

3-Approaches to self managed learning

Individual could learn through the research which they will be doing that could be either been issued by the university or college even at work place, people could learn different techniques used in doing the research. Formal education and schooling remain highly valued in most societies, and many educators, employers, policy-makers, and average citizens find it difficult to place high value on what is learned on your own or outside the formal system. However, some adult educators have shown how non-traditional programs, distance education, and self-directed learning efforts can meet many challenges associated with keeping current on constantly changing knowledge. Several things are known about self-managed learning and also others terms as S-DL (Self-direct learning), S-PL, LS-D, S-RL, Autonomy, learning projects, open learning etc. However there are some differences between these terms:

* Knowles, (1975) describe Self- directed learning- is a process in which individuals take the initiatives, with or without the help of others * Autonomous learning – autonomy often is associated with independence of thought, individualized decision-making, and critical intelligence. Gibbs (1979) * Self-planned learning and learning projects – Tough’s (1979) research on people engaged in learning projects involved obtaining information on “a series of related episodes, adding up to at least seven hours” where “more than half of the person’s total motivation is to gain and retain certain fairly clear knowledge and skill, or to produce some other lasting change” . * Open learning – individualized study often is associated with external degree, open learning, or non traditional programs where most learning takes place outside formal classrooms- Ruvinsky (1986) * Self-regulated learning is a process that assists students in managing their thoughts, behaviours, and emotions in order to successfully navigate their learning experiences (Pintrich & Zusho, 2002) * Learner self-direction- is taking primary responsibility for personal learning (Brockett & Hiemstra, 1991) .

But in general all this terms are related to Self-managed learning what is a way which people or individual find different ways in learning things, which could be in the society where they are living or at work that is a diversified environment, Candy(1991). In other words is about individual managing their own learning. This included people taking responsibility for decisions about:

* What they learn * How they learn * When they learn * Where they lean * Why they learn (the most fundamentally ) Self-managed learning also is about setting out the goals for the learning by evaluating the purpose for learning and ways to achieve such goals -Brookfield (1981).People learn new things for example the culture of different people, behaviour, personality, perceptions etc.

4-Advantages and disadvantages of Self- managed learning

Some advantages and disadvantages of self-managed learning:

4.1-Advantages:

* Improved the attitudes toward learning * The learners become more confident * Also they are taking greater responsibility for their own learning than during more traditional classroom activities * Create a repertoire of skills * Learn to tolerate ambiguity in expectation of themselves * Development of higher order thinking, problem solving, collaborating skills * Exploring a variety of learning styles or approaches to learning

4.2-Disadvantages:

* The learner my find difficult to evaluate one`s own progress * The learner may not identify the learning needs according to his/her academic level * Some learners may not find appropriate resources for learning * Unable to get peer feedback

5-Ways in which lifelong learning in both personal and professional contexts could be encouraged The idea of lifelong education was first fully articulated in this century by Basil Yeaxlee (1929). He along with Eduard Lindeman (1926) provided an intellectual basis for a comprehensive understanding of education as a continuing aspect of everyday life. However to encourage lifelong learning is necessary Motivation, determination, managing time which is extremely important to self-managed learning. Lifelong learning is all about continuous learning personally that could contribute to the professional context. Individual could have personal assessment as means of lifelong learning by evaluating their strengths, weaknesses, opportunity and threats.

For example, in the workplace employees with busy schedules can learn necessary skills at their own convenience through self-study. Some technical staff in organizations who must constantly upgrade their knowledge can access new information through an individualized resource centre. For example learning by Self-reflective learning could help employees learn new skills at work place also developing their personal skills through having work task and responsibility assigned to them. While self-reflective learning reviews things, continuing professional development, combines approaches, ideas and techniques that help to develop the personal learning.

Self-reflective learning is about trying to review some opinions, judgements, personal understanding and actions that you are willing to take in a proper way and be honest about it. another example for a organization to encourage the employee taking initiative of learning something new could be giving to them a opportunity for a presentation skills where the individuals learn how to make a presentation which gives the chance to express the knowledge of what they have learnt from particular topic also give them confidence to talk in front of others, which become an advantage to the organisation when been given a task to do that need to be presented to the manager and other directors from the same company of different company.

6- Evaluation the benefits of self-managed learning to the organizations and their members In a world where there is growing pressure for increased results from fewer people, Organisations have no option but to invest heavily in learning and development. The problem is that there is not always a correlation between expenditure on training and development and pay-off for individuals and Organisations. Also individual learning may not integrate with organisational needs. Yet it is essential that individual should be helped to take on greater responsibility for their own development and growth. The key requirement, then, seems to be to create a situation where learning: * Is owned by the individual

* Is properly supported And at the same time * Is closely integrated with organisations needs This what self- managed learning provides Knowles, (1975) Self-managed learning is about people taking their own initiatives in managing their learning, but the benefits of self-managing learning to the individual as well as the organisation are positive. For Teagasc and their members will be extremely important the benefits of self-managed learning. The employees will approach their learning in a way that is most compatible with their own learning style and strategy. In approaching pre-designed, structured training modules, employees can seek out those most congruent with their learning styles.

Where the employee designs his/her own learning experience, they would opt for those with which they are most comfortable. There others several distinct benefits of SDL for the organization and their members: * SDL can help identify an “Organization`s “A” players- SDL requires initiative. Individuals who show initiative in undertaking their own SDL program are motivated, confident self-starters. Certainly they would evidence motivation, interest and behaviours in their jobs similar to “A” players. * SDL can be implemented with minimal expense – Many learning projects will cost nothing. Relatively speaking, project costs will be minimal.

* SDL minimizes the issue of transfer of learning.

7- Conclusion After done this research in self-managed learning I could say that people are taking more responsibility when they are learning by their own initiative. Self-managed learning is not something easy, though some people tend to passive that managing their own learning through self-managing learning is an old fashion way of learning. The fact is that it’s not true, the basic requirement needed to set out the goals and meeting them is hard approach to learning. Individuals need to understand the stages for the professional development plan for the purpose of having a clear objective of what they would like to achieve from self-managing learning.


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