Definition of learning

The multifaceted nature of learning makes it cumbersome to give a precise and satisfactory definition of the concept (Onyehalu, 1988). At any rate, some definition commonly found in literature are presented below:

  1. Learning involves changes in behavior as a result of past experience.
  2. Learning is a re organization of the cognitive field.
  3. Learning is the acquisition of new information or knowledge.
  4. Learning involves,and in reality consists of,a modification of instinctive or reflex responses.
  5. Learning implies understanding and the ability to relate or integrate new knowledge with established ways of doing things
  6. Learning can also lead to behavioral change as a result of experiences gained from the environment.

Learning process is essentially the understanding of how we can influence others to behave in ways different from the ones they have adopted. Whatever the definition of learning, it is believed that learning is a function of certain variables prominent among which are readiness or maturation, practice or exercise, effect and reinforcement or reward.

Taxonomy of Learning

The taxonomy of learning behaviours can be regarded as ‘the goal of the training process’. There are different types of learning. (Bloom, Mesia and Krathwohl, 1964) identified three domains of educational activities. They are:

  1. Cognitive
  2. Affective
  3. Psychomotor domains.

These domains have also been categorised by Tennant as A.S.K. (UNWIN>DO>IT,nd)

A: means attitude, which represents affective domain

S: means skills, which stands for psychomotor domains

K: knowledge which represents cognitive domain.

  1. Cognitive domain: This deals with mental skills. It involves recall of data or recognition of knowledge and the development of intellectual abilities and skills.
  2. Affective domain: This domain involves the way we deal with things emotionally such as feelings, appreciation, enthusiasms, motivations and attitudes.
  3. Psychomotor domain: This domain includes physical movement,muscular coordination,and the use of motor areas. Development of these skills requires practice and it is measured in terms of speed, distance, procedures, or techniques in execution.

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