We naturally crave learning. It is an innate ability that has allowed us to survive, evolve and thrive. Science has also shown us that our brain is quite flexible and can allow us to continue to learn at any point in our lives. Moreover, the Agile community keeps spreading the mindset of continuous improvement and continuous learning. It should therefore be logical to see most organisations using this to their competitive advantage.

However, are we putting enough emphasis on growing people's ability to learn? Do we really understand how learning works? And if we don't how can we possibly tailor our organizations to foster learning?

To explore these questions, I want to look at what scientific research tells us about learning but also explore the concept of having a fixed / growth mindset and help you reflect on how you can use these concepts to create the learning organisations of tomorrow.


Outline/Structure of the Talk

  • Introduction (3 min)
  • Dreyfus model of skill acquisition (12 min)
    Present the Dreyfus model of skill acquisition, what it means for us in Agile software development and which insight this model give us on how we learn.
  • Do we learn from our mistakes? (8 min)
    Look at the idea that "failing is learning" and see if there is any scientific evidence to back up that claim.
  • Carol Dweck's Growth mindset (12 min)
    Present Carol Dweck's research, the two mindsets she calls fixed and growth and the insight this give us on how to foster learning.
  • Systemic issues and the two mindsets (5 min)
    Reflect on which mindset is most widely promoted in our organizations and what that means for our learning.
  • Q&A (5 min)

The session also contains a few interactive questions for the audience to reflect on: the material presented, the way they can promote learning in their organizations, and in general enhance their learning experience :)

Learning Outcome

  • Understand that learning is a skill and that we can get better at it.
  • Get a better understanding of what are the key ingredients to effective learning.
  • Get familiar with Carol Dweck's research on the growth mindset.
  • Recognize that we often have a fixed mindset and that our organizations unknowingly tend to foster it.
  • Hopefully a lot of new questions and thoughts :)

Target Audience

Anyone interested in the science around learning.

schedule Submitted 2 years ago