Unlearning Is Often Needed Prior To Learning

And That Requires Analysis

Sometimes Informal Learning might be effective, and sometimes it might not be effective.

Same with Formal Learning.

If you’ve ever taught, or measured and evaluated self-paced learning pre and post, you may have found that sometimes the Learners believe that they already know the subject and/or have the skills – when they don’t.

Sometimes they have it wrong.

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If it – Informal Learning – didn’t teach the tasks and/or thinking correctly enough – THAT might have to be unlearned prior to correct Formal Learning or … correct Informal Learning.

I believe it all comes down to the analysis – of the Tasks/Topics and the incoming knowledge and skills of the Learners.

Too often this is just skipped.

Informal Learning happens regardless of whether or not that is desirable. It is desirable when the source is accurate.

Accurate in terms of being aligned with the Performance Competence Requirements – and is proven to be effective in causing Learning to occur that meets those requirements.

But how often are the product (Outputs of Behavior) and the process (Required Behavior) not clear to all involved?


Too often IMO.

The kind of analysis required need not take a long time or be costly. It can be accomplished using what I have been calling a Group Process since the early 1980s. Here is the first publication of the Analysis methods I refer to:

Models and Matrices- NSPI PIJ -1984 – 5 page PDF – the first publication of the performance and enabler analysis methods for ISD, from NSPI’s (ISPI’s) Performance & Instruction Journal, November 1984.

An application of the use of such analysis was also published in 1984 … for Curriculum Architecture … for producing what much later was called Learning Paths … suggested menus or strict sequences … of ReUsable sets of Content across multiple audiences.

CAD – Training Mag – 1984 – 6 page PDF – the first publication about Curriculum Architecture Design via a Group Process – published in Training Magazine in September 1984. Original manuscript (30 pages) – How to Build a Training Structure That Won’t Keep Burning Down.


This is all covered in my 1999 book: lean-ISD – available as a free PDF (or a paperback for $):

1999 lean-ISD Book Cover

Note: the cover design for “lean-ISD” was created by the late Geary A. Rummler.

Note: Guy W. Wallace’s book “lean-ISD” – was a recipient of a 2002 Award of Excellence for Instructional Communication from the International Society for Performance Improvement.

lean-ISD is also available as a $30 paperback book – for more and to order – please go – here.

But Wait – There’s More!

And these methods were also covered in my 2011 6-Pack – available 1 book (paperback and/or Kindle) at a time:

PACT 6 Pack

Click on the graphic above for information about these 6 books – and other related books.

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