Learning to Learn – Again

Originally posted Tuesday August 21, 2012 by Deirdre Pickerell

The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn. ~Alvin Toffler

As summer 2012 comes to an end, we are bombarded with back to school messages. This year, Canadian shoppers are expected to spend 13%more than they did last year on everything from pencils and erasers to laptop computers and sneakers. It isn’t just our youth, however, that are returning to school. Adults are also headed back to the classroom; an upward trend expected to continue over the next several years.

For some adults, a return to school – whether to earn a certificate, diploma, or degree – can be as stressful as that first day of Kindergarten. A lot may have changed since the last time they were in a classroom and learning while juggling work and family responsibilities can add to already busy and stress-filled lives. 10Tips to Fit Professional Development Into a Busy Life offers some easy-to-implement solutions when adding the role of student.

As you think about your learning goals for this fall, an important first step may be learning about how you learn. Your learning style may impact the type of educational choices you make (e.g., as a solitary learner a busy classroom may not be the best choice). Uncertain of your learning style? Learning Styles Online offers a great, and brief, summary of the 7 learning styles and a learning styles questionnaire.

Keep in mind that learning doesn’t have to involve a return to formal education or the completion of a degree program. Reading a book, listening to a recorded lecture, or attending a webinar are great ways to start, or re-start, your professional development journey.

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