Unit 24 Understand Learning Process

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The aim of this unit is to enable learners to develop understanding of different theories and styles of learning and to apply this to learning strategies within the health and social care workplace.

Unit abstract

The unit investigates the learning process. Learners will explore current theories of learning and relate these to the development of practical skills and the acquisition of knowledge and understanding. The unit provides an understanding of the different ways in which individuals learn and can be supported in the health and social care workplace to develop practice. Learners will draw on their own experience to suggest ways of supporting learning. Learners will investigate individual learning needs and consider how practice in the health and social care workplace can provide support for care workers. They will explore ways of planning learning opportunities and the factors that contribute to successful delivery or learning in the workplace. This unit is particularly appropriate for those with responsibilities for supporting the learning of others in the workplace, but would be equally useful for practitioners to use as part of their own personal and professional development.

Learning outcomes

1 Understand different theories of learning

  • Domains of learning: Bloom’s Taxonomy of learning domains (cognitive, psychomotor, affective)
  • Theories of learning: behaviourist, gestalt, cognitive, humanistic
  • Different ways in which learning can occur: learning cycle (Kolb), learning circles (Race); learning through doing, learning through experience; planning, teaching, observing, mentoring, tutoring, demonstration, feedback.

2 Understand the impact of learning styles on learning by individuals

  • Learning style: visual, aural, tactile, kinaesthetic; activist, reflector, pragmatist, theorist
  • Influences: motivation, environment, culture, communication, past experience
  • Own learning: motivation, responsibilities, experiential, learning from others, learning by doing

3 Be able to suggest strategies for delivering and assessing learning in a health and social care workplace

  • Factors to be considered: benefits eg for the user of services, team, organisation, individual; quality systems; learning outcomes required; resources available; scheduling; occupational standards; learning styles
  • Teaching strategies: work-based, through experience; learning in groups, individual learning, classroom-based teaching, mentoring, tutoring, shadowing, demonstration, coaching, online, question and answer, independent learning; one-to-one, groups
  • Strategies for delivering learning: planning, induction, resources and materials, guidance, personal support, monitoring and review, feedback, Individual Learning Plans, formative assessment, summative assessment.
  • Techniques for assessing learning: testing eg question and answer; observation eg direct, expert witness records; evidence-based eg projects, presentations, artefacts produced; against National Occupational Standards

4 Understand how to support the individual learning needs of health and social care workers

  • Learning needs: literacy, numeracy, IT, second language, sensory impairment, dyslexia, dyspraxia, attention deficit, time-management
  • Diagnostic tools: for literacy, numeracy; oral, paper-based, online
  • Support for individual learning needs: teaching strategies, technical aids, learning materials, planning learning, teaching, assessing, providing feedback, supporting quality assurance.


Relevant information on lifelong and work-based learning can be found at the following:

  • www.ento.org.uk                                   Work-based learning National Training Organisation
  • www.lluk.org                                         Lifelong Learning UK
  • www.niace.org.uk                                 National Institute of Adult Continuing Education

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