A Useful Approach: Double Loop Learning

18.09.2015

 

Talent, persistence, dedication and luck are crucial ingredients for success. As well as self-awareness. Double-loop learning can help us raise the latter.

 

What I experience in many organisational settings is that people struggle as a result of poor goal setting and decision-making abilities. When facilitating a community or practice (CoP), it is therefore crucial to support members in defining their objectives, analysing their situation, and in developing strategies that may help them achieve their goals.

 

Double Loop Learning 

 

My CoP experience has shown that dooble loop learning - a cognitive approach coined by Argyris and Schon in the 1970s – is a very useful method as it asks learners to permanently challenge their assumptions, values, strategies, and even their goals. In other words, learners who pursue a specific goal need to define small, doable steps, try them out and be ready to modify them in the light of practical experience.

 

This sounds simple. In most real life contexts, however, double loop learning is a very complex process where political, organisational, financial, and personal interests may be at stake. The approach asks for trust and courage, a visionary and fresh way of thinking about one's goals as well as a good mix of intuition and tact.

 

Needless to say that CoP can provide the proper environment  where learners can openly share their thoughts and ideas with peers, cope with failure, increase self-awareness, and develop innovative strategies in pursuit of their goals.

 

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