General Management Skills – Helping Students To Manage Their Learning

Self-assessment of the study skills

Needs analysis

Adult learners often complain that they can’t manage their learning because of a lack of useful learning skills and the ability to learn effectively,so they need to be supported to assess and develop their learning/studying skills.

Study skills development includes the following five components:

    *Self-awareness and self-evaluation
    *Awareness of what is required
    *Methods, organisation, strategies
    *Self-confidence
    *Awareness of your study practice and habits

The learners’ success during the teaching/learning process depends on their abilities to assess their current short-term and long-term learning needs and skills. At the start of the course the educator should pay attention to:

    *identification of their current skills level
    *identification of the evidences of their abilities
    * identification of what they need to improve
    *identification of support or resources available

As an educator you can suggest learners look at the following sheet to help them create their own self-evaluation strategy.

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When the learners have completed the self-evaluation process they should be able to:

    *identify and select possible strategies for self-evaluation
    *identify their own strengths and areas to improve
    * identify possible sources of evidence to illustrate strengths and skills to improve
    *plan actions to build on strengths and improve skills with targets, timescales and resources/support needed
    *identify factors which might affect their plans

The learner should now be able to make and update her/his own personal profile. A profile is simply a snapshot of herself/himself as she/he is – skills, qualities, attributes, and achievements. The most important uses of the personal profile are:

    *making a personal development plan
    *developing habits of reflection and self-analysis

Successful development of learners’ study skills depends on a good system for monitoring progress. You can prepare for your learners a checklist which can include the good study skills they have already developed and evidence or examples of their availability. You can organise a discussion with learners about their ways of learning.

To do this you can use the following tips:

    *Ask learners to think of something they are good at
    *Ask them to write down a few words explaining how they became good at whatever it was
    *Help them to compare their responses to the previous two questions
    *Comment on how rarely people declare that they became good at something through being taught or being shown how, and so on
    *Ask learners to think of some learning experience that went wrong and to write down a few words about what happened to make it an unsuccessful learning experience
    *Help them to compare the causes of poor learning experiences

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