Learning can be defined in a number of ways. Here are some of them ...

2009-07-23: (rw) Instrumental and Ontological Learning

Summarised from a previous post in the Discourses blog, we can say that:

The purpose of academic writing is: to evaluate, revise, develop,and create ontologies and heuristics. Note: 'ontologies' is used here in the computing sense, i.e. as a set of concepts which is sufficient to map out a particular domain, and not in the philosophical sense. i.e. as a mode of social and intellectual 'being'. This use of 'ontologies' includes learning and knowledge creation in the instrumental sense.

However, the purpose of learning and scholarship in the broader, holistic sense, is also to evaluate, revise, develop and create 'ontologies' in the philosophical sense, which therefore includes ethics and emerging personal, professional and social identities, and the identities of specific communities of practice.

If we put this together, we might get a concise and comprehensive summary of learning and knowledge, including both of what I have elsewhere referred to as 'instrumental reflection' and 'ontological reflection' (see contents list on the left).

So perhaps we can say that

Learning is:
The process of acquiring and consolidating the capacity to ...
use, evaluate, revise, develop and create heuristics and ontologies (in both senses of the word ontology).


2008(rw) Learning is ...
Here are some surprisingly serious versions of what learning is ..

#1 Learning
Learning is the smile that arises from ...
interesting conversations
interesting experiments
and good practise

#2 Learning
Learning is the smile that arises from ...
exploring,
benchmarking,
& mastering
new affordances.

see: 4th December 2006 posting on Affordances, Identities etc ... in WOLF

Learning Objects
One of my favourite learning objects is the trinomial cube. It has such wonderful affordances, linking kinesthetic blocks at pre-school level with mathematics.

Metaphors for Learning.
Here you can find a range of metaphors for learning (Vakkayil 2008)