The Learning Journey Platform

The goal of the Learning Journey Platform is to make Learning Power improvement accessible to anyone with a smart device.  Helping everyone to succeed not only in their study, but also in their work and in the community.

From Classroom to Boardroom – Learning Power drives success

Developed through 18 years of academic research, the Learning Power platform and previous versions have been used over 120,000 times to help individuals and teams improve their capacity to learn.

Learning Power Home

With the ability to support multiple languages and tones of voice tailored to each audience, it is a unique capability that enables continuous Learning Power improvement throughout the journey of a learner – from school, to college, to university and into work.

It’s also a powerful tool for supporting community engagement – addressing shared problems that matter.

With an obvious home in Education, the Learning Journey Platform is increasingly being used by Business around the world to improve performance by increasing the Learning Power of individuals, teams and organisations, enabling them to transform, adapt and succeed.

Its a new and unique opportunity to build sustainable Learning Power improvement into individual and organisational learning.

The Platform’s features and benefits

It is more than just a diagnostic tool – it supports the entire Learning Power improvement cycle, from purpose to performance.

  • It is ‘always on’ – the platform is constantly available to provide new and rapid feedback, not just a one-off assessment
  • It is accessible and easy to use
  • It supports and informs coaches and leaders as well as their teams
  • It generates a rich and growing data set to drive collaborative research, development and continuous improvement

Without purpose, learning is a journey without a destination

The first stage in any learning journey is understanding why you are attempting something – establishing purpose.  The platform makes this very simple, guiding you through a series of questions that tease out the purpose.

Discovering your personal Learning Power profile

Next, the platform takes you through the Learning Power profile, answering simple questions about how you think, feel and behave while learning. Based on these answers, a personalised Learning Power profile is generated, helping you to understand your capacity to learn based on eight dimensions of learning.

Learning Power Results

lightshot

Improving your Learning Power

Being able to improve your Learning Power is at the heart of the platform.  By identifying which learning power dimensions to improve, you give a new shape to your profile, creating a visual target for your improvement plan.

Change my profileThe platform makes this easy by enabling you to drag and stretch your selected dimension scores on the spider diagram of your Learning Power profile and by prompting and recording the improvement strategies you create which enable you to achieve your targets.

Doing something about it…

The next step is also simple, but often overlooked – it’s about putting a plan into action and doing something differently, to practice and improve your Learning Power.  We call this Doing The Job.  It is when Learning Power is used in action to build new knowledge, achieve goals and create new value.

Lending a helping hand

To help you on your journey, we have created your own ‘buddy’ that will offer personalised help along the way. 

LJP5

Offering helpful hints and tips, this will make sure you get the most out of your learning journey.

Tracking progress

The last step in any learning journey is to measure the progress made against your learning objectives.

LJP6

The platform makes it easy to retrieve and compare previous learning power profiles and to track your progress over time.

Unique access to learning data

The platform also provides access to the underlying data to enable valuable analytical insights, for coaches and leaders, of the individual and group feedback.

LJP7.png

Access to this level of learner data is ground-breaking as it allows for integration with wider data sets for further analytical insight and to drive Research and Development opportunities.

A Digital Learning Infrastructure for self-directed learning

Why does this matter?

Complex problem solving, critical thinking and creativity are the three most important capabilities for thriving in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.  These are not traditionally developed through legacy learning and development systems (human or digital)because they require real-world, purposeful problems and contexts, the ability to work across silos, new measurement models and courageous leadership. Learning design for teachers is about creating the conditions where students can take responsibility for their own learning by invoking their own passion and purpose and the agency to pursue these through a learning journey in contexts where the outcome is not known in advance

What are we measuring?

The most important unit of change is the story and identity of the learner – not the teacher, the curriculum or the measurement model. Legacy systems tend to privilege the content of the curriculum, a reductionist measurement model and the teacher as agent of change.  The challenge for learning analytics is to build a digital infrastructure based on a data architecture which provides a ‘single view of the learner’, where data belongs to the learner and can be used, one student at a time, across transitions, and in real-time, for better decision-making as they navigate their way through complex problems to solutions that matter to them.  This is sometimes described as a call to move towards Education 3.0 – a challenging worldview shift from a top down, individualist and dualistic worldview (Education 1.0) towards an integral, participatory and wholistic one.   For a discussion about these ideas see the first Handbook for Learning Analytics and a chapter called Layers, Loops and Processes.

What this Post is About

I want to focus on the challenges and opportunities of building such a Digital Learning Infrastructure and will use examples from the new Learning Emergence Learning Journey Platform.  The first release of the platform is live with a group of schools in the UK and  with another group of schools in the Hunter, NSW, sponsored by Hunter Water Corporation. Hunter Water are using the same Learning Journey Platform as a vehicle for cultural transformation as they move into the uncertainty and challenges of infrastructure resilience and sustainability for the future of the region.

The Learning Journey Platform

The purpose of the Learning Journey Platform is to enhance self-directed learning capabilities, and thus the resilient agency, of students, teachers and leaders and schools across the world. It provides scaffolding support for people in authentic enquiry learning journeys which contribute measurably to data-informed local solutions that matter and empower self-directed, resilient learners. ‘Learning Power’ is a term which describes this approach. Resilient people are a pre-requisite for resilient and sustainable practices at all levels of society. See this link for an introduction.

Loops – feedback and feedforward

Rapid feedback of meaningful data is key to enhancing self-directed learning. The Learning Journey Platform hosts the CLARA learning power assessment tool, the TESAteacher development tool for pedagogy which supports deep student engagement and Angela Duckworth’s GRIT survey.  Feedback to the user is immediate and provides a framework for reflection – ‘backwards’ towards identity and purpose and ‘forwards’ to a particular purposeful outcome.

The Learning Journey Platform aggregates anonymised data in real time for coaches, teachers and leaders to interrogate in different ways. This capability is possible because of the underlying data architecture which allows for a ‘single view of the learner’. The data belongs to the learner and they can take their learningjourneys with them from school to school and on to University and into the work place

Processes – the learning journey

A key design principle underpinning the Learning Journey Platform is that learning is a journey that begins with a purpose and moves towards an outcome or  ‘performance’ of some sort. When a student defines and owns their own purpose – the why – they are at the beginning of resilient agency. They need to use their learning dispositions – their learning power – to understand themselves as learners and to figure out how to move towards their purpose. The what is the data, information, experience and new knowledge they need to identify, collect, curate and re-construct in order to achieve their purpose. This is a familiar enquiry cycle for most educators – the key difference here is the emphasis on purpose and agency and self-directed navigation. It’s also a process that is core to improvement science approaches.

The learning journey metaphor is simple and yet profound in terms of mind-set shifts. A person leads a journey, you can be on your own or with others, there’s a terrain, a map if you’re lucky, challenges, diversions and a destination. Journeys have endings and beginnings and way-points, and come in all shapes and sizes.

The Learning Journey Platform builds on best practice in data architecture from FinTech in customer journeys and uses AI to support the individual learner in navigating their learning.  Whereas in the commercial world the focus is on the ‘next best action’, in the world of learning the focus is on the ‘next best offer’. Dialogue and discourse are at the heart of learning.

Layers – students, teachers, leaders, system leaders 

Schools are complex living systems which are multi-layered. We know how important teacher professional learning is – you can’t give what you haven’t got. Moving towards education 3.0 means to be part of a worldview shift which is happening around us because of the challenges of life in the 21C. A worldview shift of this type is uncomfortable and challenging. It’s best encountered and managed through deep professional learning – for leaders and teachers.  The Learning Journey Platform captures the data, analyses it and returns aggregated anonymised data as feedback to teachers and leaders for more focused interventions and better decision making. Personal data is only viewed by another person with explicit permission: it belongs to the Learner.

What Next

The focus for the next stage of the Learning Journey Platform is on enhancing the use of AI to support purposeful conversations – enhancing, not replacing, the face to face relationships of trust, affirmation and challenge that are at the heart of learning. ‘Buddy’ already asks questions and ‘calls time’ for reflection at key junctures in each journey and he’ll get cleverer as time goes by. The second focus is on developing support and scaffolding for a whole authentic enquiry project.

The Learning Journey Platform is available for use by schools and HE in this phase of development. Its capability to collect and integrate data around rapid cycles of enquiry make it an ideal candidate to support professional learning and improvement science approaches to educational transformation. Its partnership with Declara – social learning and knowledge curation – mean that through the INSIGHTS tab capability users can access ‘knowledge pathways’ – units of relevant learning material which sit within Declara. The potential for scaling up professional learning across geographies and time is significant.

This sort of education innovation requires new business models that allow for collaboration, innovation and evolution. The Learning Emergence Partnership is developing a wholistic approach where the same learning design principles are used in industry for cultural transformation both in terms of employees and different types of users and customers. In between education and industry there is ‘community engagement’ and ‘vocational education’.  Our vision is to make this work accessible for all schools, working with both industry and philanthropy. Learning Emergence has an asset locked Foundation to ensure this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Customer Journeys: Learning Journeys – beyond ‘nudge’ to digital decisioning at scale

The Learning Emergence team hosted an International Centre for Infrastructure Futures workshop at the Systems Centre  yesterday to explore the synergy between ‘customer journeys’ as developed in the digital architecture of retail banking – and ‘learning journeys’ as developed by the Bristol team to capture the personal and social processes which contribute to the development of ‘resilient agency’.

the achievable goal of true ‘customer at a time’ value management with many millions of customers

Dec Blue Partner  Tim Crick, also a Learning Emergence Partner, showed how advanced customer decisioning technology can help organisations deliver agile and adaptive ‘customer at a time’ value management strategies across digital, assisted and face-to-face  channels. This transformation in approach to customer management is radical – from a product/campaign centred approach to a ‘customer at a time’ Next Best Action Journey, from siloed channels to ‘joined up’ channels, and from  ‘old data’ to ‘real time insight’ – its all about how to engage the individual in becoming resilient agents of their own financial journeys, rather than ‘telling them what to do’ and ‘selling them products they don’t really want’.  Dec Blue is partnering with the Learning Emergence Partnership to explore this ‘joined up thinking’ through research and development. Untitled

Lets just suspend our suspicion of the banks for a minute and explore these ideas.

Ok – this is ‘commercial speak’ but we are Analogical Scavengers....and if we look at this from a different viewpoint,then it has many of the characteristics of learning journeys.  The ‘person’ has a desire or a purpose. That purpose gives fuels their learning power.  They figure out how to go about achieving that purpose, to persevere and explore all the relevant data and options available to them, in their unique context. They accumulate all that information, no doubt feel overwhelmed, and challenged as they figure out how best to achieve their goal. They get the help they need (online and offline) and finally settle on their preferred outcome. Once they move in they’ve achieved their purpose…they got what they wanted and needed which was a home of their own (not a mortgage!).   This is what we call a ‘single loop’ learning journey – just getting the job done. But if we use the same digital decisioning capability to ‘make the journey visible’  so that the individual learns how to go about navigating the journey itself more reflexively, asking more questions, challenging more assumptions and exploring more alternatives, then we’re actually enabling people to strengthen their learning power and become more discerning and effective in creating value. 

customer journey

Just willingly suspend your disbelief’ about the banks for a moment. The focus here is on enabling the individual to identify a purpose, to creatively explore what their options are, to find people and resources to help them, to collect the data they need to explore options, to make a decision and to implement it. Maybe the outcome is a NO. Still it’s a job done and its a learning journey. The journey has an architecture – stages, steps, transitions, interactions, triggers, beginnings and endings. The point is we have the technology and the know how to build this sort of digital decisioning infrastructure at scale.

what if we tuned this technology to the challenge of CO2 reduction?

customer journey fuelled by learning

double loop learningThe ‘customer needs cycle’ matches the ‘authentic enquiry cycle’ ….. what we know about learning power and resilient agency adds value to this by locating the ‘customer’  (aka ‘learner’ or  ‘individual’) as the primary agent of purpose and thus the driver of the process. Resilience is about mindfully navigating the journey between purpose and performance fuelled by learning power, which is the way in which we regulate the flow of energy and information over time in the service of a purpose of value’.   The dimensions of learning power simply provide a language and a focus for how we can go about this and get better at navigating learning journeys when we don’t know what the outcome is in advance. Learning Emergence Partner Steven Barr took us through the first steps of designing a customer/learning journey focused on ‘cycle to work’ as a job to be done which, if done at scale would have an impact on the overall outcome of CO2 reduction.

linking the the knowledge and know how about digital customer journeys with learning journeys and applying this at scale to an important social  ‘job to be done’ is the next big research and development challenge

Carnegie Summit on Improvement in Education

I’ve just returned from this conference at which I gave a paper reporting on our proof of concept study in applying hierarchical process modelling to school improvement: Evaluating Wider Outcomes of Schooling, the ECHO project. The paper reporting the project has just been accepted for publication in Educational Management, Administration and Leadership.

Improvement Science – Systems Architecting

The theme of the conference was Improvement Science. In the world of Engineering and infrastructure, this would be called ‘systems architecting’. It was about a holistic, rigorous approach to improving organisations as complex systems, engaging all stakeholders in defining purpose, analysing the system, defining a measurement model, rapidly prototyping improvement strategies, whilst harnessing collective intelligence and ‘learning our way forwards’.

There were thought provoking keynotes, on Improvement Science, Lessons from Improvement in Healthcare and Resilience. There were over 1000 people present mostly from education, and a mixture of researchers and leading practitioners. It was inspiring to see and feel a new community of enquiry grow as we shared our bright spots and learned from our failures. Learning Together was a key theme and we were convinced that together we can achieve more than any one of us can alone.

Summit Highlights

Throughout the Summit, attendees reported key messages and actionable takeaways via Twitter. The event’s energy  and key ideas have been captured through a Storify.  The closing highlight video can be viewed on the participant portal and additional phoos from the event are on  the Carnegie  Facebook page.

Session Materials

If you are looking for materials from any of the Summit breakout sessions, they are available online at the participant portal. Log in using the credentials below to view and download PDFs of session presentations and handouts. In addition, videos from the keynotes have been uploaded for your viewing .

URL: carnegiefoundationsummit.org/portal
Password: Summit2015

Learning to Improve

The Summit saw the launch of Learning to Improve  which is  a key  resource if you want to engage more deeply in improvement science. Additional copies can be purchased through Harvard Education Press or any major book distributor. If you would like to use the book as a text for a class, please contact Carnegie directly ncole@carnegiefoundation.org.

Learning to Learn – International Perspectives

Learning to learn is crucial for success in our complex, unpredictable and data-drenched world.

L2LfrontcoverThis new book from members of the Learning Emergence Network explores learning to learn from theory and practice around the world.  See our people pages for many of the authors. 

Learning to learn is both a process and an outcome of formal education, along with other trans-disciplinary and life-wide competences. It goes deep into pedagogy and practice and is influenced by culture and context. As an outcome, it is a competence we aspire to measure and celebrate.

Learning how to learn is a crucial competence for human flourishing in 21st century conditions of risk and uncertainty.  It is one of eight key competencies identified by the European Union as a key goal within the Lisbon and the 2020 strategies (European Council 2006). The European Union maintains a keen interest in this topic as demonstrated by the European network of policy makers and several working groups on key competencies, including the creation of the European Network on Learning to Learn (Hoskins & Fredriksson, 2008). Internationally, learning to learn is emerging as a focus for school improvement and as a foundation for lifelong and lifewide learning. UNESCO includes approaches to learning as a key domain which should be an entitlement for all children, and one which needs to be assessed.

Language matters.

There is a real need for serious debate about the term ‘learning to learn’ which is frequently used in different ways and in different contexts without clear definition.  Often it is used within a conceptually narrow framework, limited to “measurable” study strategies and learning styles (OECD 2009) for which there is little evidence of success. There is an urgent need for a research validated foundation for learning to learn and what constitutes it.

Practitioners, university lecturers, teachers and schools around the world are interested in their students becoming able to take responsibility for their own learning and achievement – and for this they need to learn how to learn.  Existing funds of knowledge are all ‘out there on the internet’ and what matters is how individuals and teams make sense out of and utilise the mass of information which bombards them every day. Dialogue between research and practice is crucial to underpin this movement, generating a discipline of research-informed practice which frames and informs both commercial and policy interests. In the absence of a ‘pensee unique’  the global community of scholarship in education provides an important voice which should make a healthy, collaborative contribution to the formation of policy and practice.

Assessment of competence in learning to learn is a critically important policy ideal – one which the European Union embraced and embarked upon with Learning to Learn working group. After some serious effort we came to the conclusion that there are so many different approaches to learning to learn from across the EU, that it was impossible in 2007 to arrive at a consensus in its measurement. Before we can ever effectively assess something we need to know exactly what it is we are measuring – as a matter of professional ethics. We also need to know what measurement models are most suitable and what is the purpose of the assessment before we develop our assessment technologies. This book was conceived by people who participated in that EU project and, we hope, in an important way it keeps the dialogue alive.

Complexity and Learning to Learn

Learning to learn is a complex process rather than either a simple or even a complicated one.  Demetriou’s chapter explores an architecture of mind that incorporates four inter-related systems all of which may be relevant to learning to learn. Each contributor proposes a complex mix of processes that coalesce into learning to learn – including affective, cognitive and dispositional factors. All agree that learning to learn is about the promotion of self-directed learning, the cultivation of intrinsic motivation for learning and the development of intentional agency on the part of the learner.  All agree that contextual factors – such as pedagogy, assessment regimes, quality of relationships and socio-cultural factors – together interact and influence the ability of an individual to learn how to learn and to become an agent in their own learning journey. Learning to learn is messy and complex.

The implications of this complexity are enormous. edgar morinAs Edgar Morin argues (and Jung before him), Western thought has been dominated by the principles of disjunction, reduction and abstraction. Engaging with learning to learn as a complex process requires a paradigm of distinction-conjunction, so that we can distinguish without disjoining and associate without identifying or reducing.  In short we need to develop new and more holistic ways of understanding, facilitating and enabling learning to learn in our education communities, so that we can hold in tension the inner personal aspects of agency, purpose and desire and dispositions and the more measurable external and public manifestations of learning and performance and collaboration with others in learning to learn. We need measurement models that can account for quality of trust as a core resource, and story as a vehicle for agency as well as the more traditional and familiar measures of performance and problem solving.

Becoming self-organising agents in our own lives

If learning to learn is about human beings becoming self-organising agents of their own lives, as our contributors suggest, then it is clear that ‘top down’, transmission oriented approaches to learning, teaching and school improvement are no longer enough. The challenge is how to create the conditions in which individual students are able to take responsibility for their own learning over time.  By definition, this cannot be done for them. It has to be by invitation, allowing learning to learn to emerge and fuel agency and purpose.

The establishment of the framework for international comparison of educational achievement provided by the OECD through the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) and the means for regularly compiling the data is a considerable achievement. It has provided an evidence base for Governments to inform domestic educational policy and against which to allocate priorities. What this data set is less effective at revealing are the reasons behind international and regional difference: we still understand too little about what drives these broad numbers. Furthermore the numbers continue to reveal deep, intractable challenges in education such as embedded disadvantage linked to geography, economics and ethnicity.

There is a pressing need to assemble an internationally comparable set of data which can better inform our understanding of factors such as learning how to learn and how this varies within and between different contexts. The academic and theoretical work that has been undertaken on these issues to date, while rich and deep, has focused on aspects of the problem, often failing to cross disciplinary boundaries. The real world challenge of educational improvement, meanwhile, is relentlessly trans-disciplinary, involving a complex interplay between social, institutional and individual factors. It presents a challenge both to theory and practice. The PISA data by comparison achieves comparability through the use of widely available proxy indicators but lacks the depth and resolution needed to provide an understanding of the mechanisms driving the patterns it surfaces.

Valuing Difference

What is also clear from this volume is the value of different cultures in the debate about learning to learn. Two chapters are written explicitly from an Eastern perspective  – demonstrating how Confucian philosophy can enrich our understanding of learning to learn and challenging some deeply held Western assumptions.  We have contributions from Australia, New Zealand, Finland, UK, Spain, Austria, China, Italy and the USA and uniquely, a set of case studies from learning to learn projects in remote Indigenous communities where the cultural differences are enormous. This  is a ‘brolga’ a community  metaphor for creativity for children in Daly River School, in Northern Territory.
Creativity

However comprehensive, this volume does not address a number of research and practice themes or leaves unanswered questions for further research. Among these, perhaps the most relevant is the road towards the assessment of learning to learn which is a daunting endeavour – although it provides a foundation for this through its contribution in exploring what it is that should be assessed in learning to learn and why. Other open questions concern the deployment of learning to learn in school improvement; in the training of trainers, educators and educational leaders; in personal development and empowerment. The connection of learning to learn with other key competencies, such as active citizenship and entrepreneurship, also requires further study.

This book draws on a rich, global tradition of research and practice. It is written by researchers and  practitioners who care deeply about education and about learning how to learn in particular. Our purpose is to generate debate, to link learning communities and to make a contribution to the ways in which societies worldwide are seeking to re-imagine their education systems. Our hope is that learning to learn will soon find a consistent place in educational policies worldwide.