Social Learning – On a Continuum from Informal to Formal Reflecting What’s at Stake

Social Learning – exists on a continuum of Informal to Formal – and hopefully reflects the Stakes involved.

All Learning Starts as Informal

The question of “What’s at stake?” – should drive the decision to move it up the Formality ladder. What Risks and/or Rewards are at Stake. Are the Stakes “Significant” – or not?

Low Stakes Performance – leave it to Informal Learning (trial and error) or Informal Social Learning (ask someone for help).

Medium Stakes Performance – provide standalone Guidance/ Job Aids/ EPSS/ / UnRegulated SOPs/ Quick-Reference-Guides/ Performance Support/ WorkFlow Learning – or whatever you call it – as “it” has had many names since the 1960s.

High Stakes Performance – should get the full treatment: deliberate Analysis, thoughtful Design, thorough Development with Alpha, Beta, and Pilot Testing before revision and release to the Deployment and Access Systems – and then Evaluation for Continuous Improvement and Maintenance.

And if it is High Stakes – Attend to the covert Cognitive Tasks that are required Before, During, and After the overt Behavioral Tasks. The Thinking that parallels the Doing.

It’s Not Always Safe to Assume That Informal Social Learning Is the Key


Always Approach L&D with the Stakes in Mind

Just 2 of my 20+ books…

See all of my books on my Amazon Authors Page:


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