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

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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. 

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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.

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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.

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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

Network for Evidencing Transformative Learning

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Network for Evidencing Transformative Learning

The Learning Emergence team is collaborating in setting up a Networked Improvement Community for enhancing Students’ Resilient Agency. Working initially with schools in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide, there are already aspects of this Network for Evidencing Transformative Learning (NETL)  in place, aligned to school improvement priorities.

Purpose

The (NETL) brings together teachers, school leaders and researchers to design and develop a Networked Improvement Community with the shared purpose of improving pedagogy to enhance students’ resilience in their learning and life narratives.

School as a learning community PPT Slide - HG - 07.02.2011

  • Leaders’ learning will focus on enabling teachers to engage productively in professional enquiry tuned to school improvement.
  • Teacher learning will focus on pedagogies that support students’ resilience in learning and in life narratives.
  • Student learning will be conducted through authentic enquiry.

Objectives of the NETL

To understand and evidence the processes which contribute to the development of resilient agency in learning and life narratives for young people in formal and informal learning contexts

To systematically model and represent these processes in such a way that the data can be used for self-evaluation and improvement at all levels of the learning organisation – students, teachers, leaders, system leaders.

To understand and develop both the social and technical resources that are necessary for sustainability in networked improvement communities.

The distinctive contribution of the NETL is that it will provide a means for schools to holistically and systematically improve their capability in pedagogies that nurture student resilience and agency. The project draws on improvement science and is positioned within a framework of participatory decision making in which key stakeholders collaboratively determine and systematically evaluate key processes and outcomes, rather than being determined by external regulation. The engine for improvement is the disciplined learning journeys of all stakeholders at all levels. This will provide a foundation for scaling up and sustainability.

Why does it matter?

  • There is a growing body of evidence that standards are plateauing in many schools and that current approaches to change and improvement have taken us as far as they can
  • Current approaches are over-simplistic and predominantly managerial, encourage shallow learning and are not fit for an effective education in the 21st C; instead, schools should be seen as complex, adaptive systems that support deep learning across the whole community
  • Several long-standing, complex issues continue to hamper further pupil progress, e.g. the negative impact of key transitions; slow progress in embedding best practice about teaching and learning within and between schools; the long ‘tail’ of underachievement
  • International evidence that the best education systems (in terms of sustained improvement) focus on the quality of teacher recruitment, professional learning and the development of outstanding, learning-centred leadership to ensure that pupils become resilient agents of their own learning, supported by parents and carers
  • Head teachers are constantly challenged to focus on day-to-day operational issues rather than essential strategic, values-related and learning-focused activities improvement at scale, driven by stakeholder purpose.
  • Well being and resilient agency is a challenge for all schools: Promoting physical and mental health in schools creates a virtuous circle reinforcing children’s attainment and achievement that in turn improves their wellbeing, enabling children to thrive and achieve their full potential.

Social Organisation of the NETL

Researchers will be ‘critical friends’ with key leaders in schools. We will build directly on the experience and expertise in Improvement Science of colleagues at the Carnegie Foundation for the Improvement of Teaching in San Francisco and the experience of the Learning Emergence Network (www.learningemergence.net). Since we are concerned with the whole system, we will co-design interventions from three viewpoints: leaders, teachers and students. A key principle is that all members of a learning community take increasing responsibility for collaboratively leading their own learning and change:

  • Leaders will pilot visual mapping tools to gain insight into the complex dynamics of their schools as whole systems, in order to inform strategic planning, personal development and organisational learning
  • Teachers will engage in authentic enquiry & professional learning aimed at developing learner-centred practices, in order to develop professionally as facilitators of learning
  • Students will engage in personalised learning through authentic enquiry which enables them to self asses and develop their learning power and enables them to progressively take responsibility for their own learning journey — in and out of school

Schools will have the opportunity to use state of the art learning technologies for supporting critical enquiry, coaching, social learning and knowledge mapping. Evidence will be gathered throughout the three-year project providing feedback for schools and data for researchers.

Virtual Organisation of the NETL

The Hub of the Networked Improvement Community will be based at the Connected Intelligence Centre at the University of Technology Sydney. The rapid prototype interventions designed by key stakeholders will be supported and scaffolded through a framework of tools that facilitate feedback for self-directed improvement whilst allowing for each site to design contextually specific prototypes. Three key platforms form the technical ecosystem for the project which supports its social organisation:

The Surveys for Open Learning Analytics Platform

Set up through crowd sourced funding by the Learning Emergence Network, SOLA will provide rapid feedback of data for users, including students, which can be used for improvement whilst at the same time capturing raw quantitative data for researcher analysis of the impact of the user led interventions. The Crick Learning for Resilient Agency Profile (CLARA) is a key tool provided through this platform. Other tools and resources developed by the network will be available via SOLA’s identity management system.

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A Social Learning Platform

for sharing and annotating learning resources.

An Evidence Hub

for pooling and evaluating learning from the rapid prototyping across the project, linking researcher and practitioner evidence.

A Network of Networks

Each leading stakeholder in the NETL (a school or learning centre) will itself be a node within a wider network. With close support from the NETL Hub each school would be invited to engage in three inter-related programmes.

  • A two year professional learning programme, aligned to AITSL standards, which embeds teacher learning in the work of the NETL
  • A structured retreat programme for system leaders
  • An Australian Research Council funded Linkage Research Project (under review)

These programmes are distinct and inter-related, designed to build capacity in the leadership of each stakeholder group to continue and improve after the project is completed. A network of networks will develop supported by the social and technical resources at the Network Hub. In this way we expect to build capacity and sustainability and demonstrate inclusivity.

We are actively fundraising for this programme through formal research bids, crowd-sourcing, philanthropic and corporate sponsorship.

Learning Power: new research identifies Mindful Agency as central to resilience

For learning in the complex world of risk,  uncertainty and  challenge, what matters is being able to identify, select, collect, collate, curate and collaboratively re-construct information to suit a particular purpose. This is why there has been a sustained and growing interest in learning dispositions and the personal qualities people, teams and communties need to flourish. As Edgar Morin says:

edgar morinWe need a kind of thinking that reconnects that which is disjointed and compartmentalized, that respects diversity as it recognizes unity, and that tries to discern interdependencies. We need a radical thinking (which gets to the root of problems), a multidimensional thinking, and an organizational or systemic thinking

Ruth Deakin Crick 2015After fifteen years of experience in the research and practical application of learning power using a survey tool called the Effective Lifelong Learning Inventory (ELLI), Professor Crick, one of the originators, led the research team in a thorough review and reanalysis of the data.  Supported by the Learning Emergence Network of international researchers, the results are now published for the first time in the British Journal of Educational Studies:

Ruth Deakin Crick, Shaofu Huang, Adeela Ahmed Shafi & Chris Goldspink (2015): Developing Resilient Agency in Learning: The Internal Structure of Learning Power. British Journal of Educational Studies. DOI: 10.1080/00071005.2015.1006574. Open Access Eprint:  http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00071005.2015.1006574

Interestingly, the support for this re-analysis came from the Systems Engineers in the Engeering Faculty at the University of Bristol  as part of the International Centre for Infrastructure Futures, rather than ELLI’s original home in the Graduate School of Education….where Crick, Broadfoot and Claxton began in 2000.  Perhaps Morin would have something to say about this — we think so!

The new self assessment tool, called the Crick Learning for Resilient Agency Profile (CLARA) identifies Mindful Agency as a key learning power dimension — which predicts the set of active dimensions: Creativity, Curiosity, Sense-Making and Hope & Optimism.   Two distinct Relationship dimensions measure Belonging and Collaboration.  Finally, an Orientation to Learning indicator measures a person’s degree of Openness to change — in contrast to either fragile dependency or rigid persistence.

Internal Structure of LP with simplied view 19 August

The new measurement model represented by CLARA resulted from a detailed  exploration of the patterns, relationships  and interdependencies within the key constructs through structural equation modelling (diagrammatic summary above).  It is a more robust, parsimonious measurement model, with strengthened research attributes and greater practical value. The research  demonstrates how the constructs included in the model link to the wider body of research, and how it serves to integrate a number of ideas that have hitherto been treated as separate. For more details from a user perspective see  Introducing CLARA.

The CLARA model suggests a view of learning that, after Siegel is:

an embodied and relational process through which we regulate the flow of energy and information over time in order to achieve a particular purpose.

Learning dispositions reflect the ways in which we develop resilient agency in learning by regulating this flow of energy and information. They enable us to engage mindfully with challenge, risk and uncertainty and to adapt and change in a way which is positively alinged with our purpose.

Resilient Agency is our capacity to move iteratively between purpose and performance, utilising our learning power and generating and re-structuring knowledge to serve our purpose.

Learning JourneyLearning, from this viewpoint, is a journey which moves between purpose and performance – to put it another way, without having purpose we’re not really going to learn in a context of complexity and information overload. To learn, when the outcome is not known in advance (which is most real world learning) requires that we are able to navigate learning as a journey, utilising our Mindful Agency, restructuring information to achieve the outcome we need.

BlueThe Learning Emergence Network has teamed up with eXplorance Blue, one of the world’s leading survey providers based in Montreal, to create the SOLA platform (Surveys for Open Learning Analytics) which can host CLARA and other assessment tools, and importantly, provide rapid feedback to users for improvement purposes.

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Visual feedback to the learner from CLARA

The rapid analytic feedback to users who complete the questionnaire is returned in the form of a spider diagrame which forms a framework for a coaching conversation which can move between learning identity and purpose and the formulation of strategies for change.  The new assessment tool is a focus for research and development around the world. Crick and Buckingham Shum are now based in the pioneering Connected Intelligence Centre and the School of Education at the University of Technology Sydney, where CLARA forms part of a research programme into dispositional learning analytics — alongside other learning analytics approaches designed to make visible – to learners and educators – the dynamics of lifelong learning qualities.

by-nc-nd (1)CLARA, and the knowledge and know-how in the research paper, have been made available for research and development under the terms of a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License. This permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.

We welcome all contributions to the ongoing research and development of this work which has applications in education, industry and community.  We have translated CLARA into Chinese, Russian and Spanish. For more details and opportunities for collaborative research and development please contact info@learningemergence.com