Dealing with resistance LO13513

Dr. Michael Kelleher (
Wed, 7 May 1997 04:32:49 -0400

Tony Barrett points out in LO13469 that it is important to understand
resistance. I agree with you Tony on this point but I do not know whether
you are suggesting that understanding is the key to breaking resistance or
whether the point is that the professional must always understand the
context in which potential learners apply their learning.

There are two issues I could add to this discussion:

1. All professionals, that is all of us, should take more care to ensure
that learners have strategies to enable them to transfer their learning to
the context in which it is applied. From this, it is evident that
classroom-based learning needs to explore new ways to ensure relevant
meaning to learners (and their organisations).

2. One of the keys to effective learning is to help people understand the
models of learners they hold of themselves. This requires an approach
which embraces a `mental model' discussion and which helps potential
learners understand that far from being `non-learners' (e.g. the adult who
has been unsuccesful at school) that their lives have been rich in
learning experiences.

Tony, I hope you find this useful.

Dr. Michael Kelleher
General Secretary
European Consortium for the Learning Organisation


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