Learn as if you to live forever. “Self Learning” is an instructional strategy to take charge of your learning process, often referred as self-directed learning. Adult education scholar named Dr. Stephen D. Brookfield takes the credit of exploring this notion. In this type of learning, a practitioner takes the responsibility of taking initiative to the execution via planning and management the whole learning process. It is either on the individual basis or in a group. Above all, learner takes the ownership of learning.
Importance of Self Learning
Learning is not confined to classrooms. With the increased access to academic resources, the trend of spoon-feeding is reducing significantly. Everyone is trying to seek knowledge and perform practical own his/her on. So, its importance is worthwhile.
- Stress-Free Learning – Whatever we do, we never want tension at all. Similarly, in learning, we surely require calmness of our mind. When you want to learn, you can go for self learning. It places emphasis on stress free process regardless the outcome and efficiency as well.
- Learning without External Assistance – It causes the confidence building in a practitioner especially in students. Because, when you try to solve a problem by yourself, then you come to know the different scenarios under the same question. Further, you tend to cope without the assistance of external tutor or any guide. So, learning without external assistance reveals us the importance of self learning.
- Development of Critical Thinking – Ability to think critically only needs practice for developing your own opinions. Self learning will force you to think critically and pass arguments under the light of credible pillar statements, statistics and evidence.
- Preparing for Future Endeavors – All you learn today acts as a furnished experience for tomorrow. Self learning provides you exposure and makes your concepts clear in a broad perspective.
- Understanding What, Why, When & How to Learn – Learning in the workspace under instructor’s guidance is quite apart from the self leaning. In self learning, you ask yourself what to learn, how to learn and many more question. It also includes the self-assessment of your gain, whether you’re on the right track or not.
Self Learning Process
Learning beyond the classes often makes us fell asleep. Yes! We want to study more but we don’t feel like that. There are many factors causing divergence from the main course of self learning. Let’s find a way to have motivation for spending more and more time with the knowledge resources.
Arrange Study Space
- Find out Pleasant Environment – This can be a library, scientific laboratory, computer lab, your room with less distraction or a cafe with the pleasant atmosphere.
- Gather Useful Study Material – It includes all of your books, research papers, guides, notebooks, stationery and scientific gadgets i.e. calculator.
- Keep Food Items by Side – One may take juice, water or snacks but try to avoid having junk of food like all those containing the high level of sugar but contain the low amount of protein and vitamins etc. Excessive use of fruit will make you active and healthy.
Remove Distractions and Clutters
- Meditation – It’s de-concentration of mind in which we let our mind to dissolve. It provides you deep rest at the runtime and stops distracting the mind from the less important clues.
- Switch the Phone to Silent Mode – In this era, we spend a lot of time on chatting or calling. Better yet, don’t forget to make silent your phone. If you place the phone out of your study site, it is good enough.
- Wear Comfortable Outfits – Try to wear loosely fitting clothes like trousers and T-shirts etc. Because anything uncomfortable will eat your attention.
- Close Irrelevant Tabs – If you’re using the laptop, computer or tab in case of soft study material to read, close all the irrelevant tabs i.e. songs, movies, social networking websites or games.
Set Study Aims
- Decide the Smart Goals – It includes all the outcomes you plan to attain in the shortest possible time frame, known as smart goals. You can achieve your short-term goals in minutes/hours also.
- Do Effective Planning – Planning by the learner is the most crucial among all the stages. So, be careful while planning because this is a roadmap. Your performance depends on what you have planned so far.
- Set an Ultimate Target – This is actually your lifetime goal for which you decide to start learning whether in an institution or by yourself. All it requires is hard work, optimism and consistency. Regardless the novelty of your aim, stay committed all the times.
- Plan to Reward yourself – After achieving the daily/weekly/monthly goals, at least acknowledge your efforts. A short party or friends meetup is the best possible reward. This really works to buck up.
- Develop Study Schedule – Forming timetable according to time per learning activity is always been an evergreen technique to move on. It reflects a broad picture of your planning comprised of all minor and major details of the learning phase.
- Be Proactive – Always stick to your schedule, it will release psychological pressure. Moreover, there exists no pile of topics to learn at the end or a night before the examination.
Take Elegant Start
Sunrise is the proof of marvellous beginning of the morning. So, always try to take a good start. Because plans without actions are same like the libraries without books. After the making efforts gradually, you will start taking interest in learning.
Self Learning Techniques
There are several techniques one can adopt for self-learning but we’ll add the most influential techniques here. So that, you may experience a significant upgrade.
Technique is noticed most markedly in the case of those who have not mastered it.
One-on-one and group conversation are simplest ways to learn. You can make conversation at home, educational institution or workspace. This will encourage you to strive to learn a lot, so they can keep teaching you what they know. Moreover, the practice of teaching is a way to furnish a concept. You may have consulted to the following:
- Online Discussion Forums
- Study Groups on Social Networking Sites
Read Books and Research
The most reliable and authentic source of knowledge is books and research. Books provide the reader leisure and encourage him/her to increase the understanding of any concept or baselines effectively. You may consult the following:
- News Editorials
- Google Scholar
- University Press Releases
Watch Informative Video
We learn abruptly what our mind watches. Nowadays, trend of E-learning is going upward because it contains worthy material like tutorials, experiments and implementations with best quality audio and video. Informational videos are now the fastest source of learning. Apart from these, motivational videos are also available to recover the energies and stay motivated. Don’t forget to type the following:
- Online Tutorials
- TED Talks and TEDx Program
Play Tricky Games
To promote your learning, there are much games on English, mathematics and general knowledge. Playing tricky games and solving puzzles sharpen your brain. Visit the following to get/play free available games:
- Play Store
- Online Gaming Portals
Keep Practicing Questions
It’s a common opinion of all intellectuals that if your keep doing practice, you will easily sail through in any examination. Making study notes and using computer-aided software assist your practising activity. More you practice, more you learn about the incorporated situations. Have a look at the following for doing practice:
- Unsolved Questions Available at the End of Chapter
Advantages of Self Learning
Self learning has been an attribute of all the leaders and revolutionists. They are avid readers and fond of self learning. There are numerous perks a self learner can enjoy. Observations regarding the advantages are mentioned below:
- Enriched Knowledge
- High Level of Adaptation
- Critical Thinking
- Exposure to Advance Learning Resources
- Problem Solving Approach
- Self Discipline and Personality Development
- Unique Point of View
- Enhanced Performance
- Strong Emotional Commitment
- Sense of Sharing Knowledge
- Life Time Learning Capability
- Public Relation (PR) Development
The key to pursuing excellence is to embrace an organic, long-term learning process, and not to live in a shell of static, safe mediocrity. Usually, growth comes at the expense of previous comfort or safety.
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