Kolb, the Learning Cycle and the Function of Assessment in Learning and Development.

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Kolb, the Learning Cycle and the function of assessment in learning and development.

David A. Kolb, (born 1939), is an educational theorist whose interests and publications focus on experiential learning, the individual and social change, career development, and executive and professional education. David developed what is commonly known as ‘The Kolb Circle’, predominantly for use within the adult learning environment although it can also be, and often is, applied to uses within higher education. Within the Kolb Circle, when applied to teaching methods, there are four key elements: * Concrete experience; simulation, practical work...

* Reflection; self evaluation, Q & A...
* Abstract conceptualisation; seminar, reading...
* Planning active experimentation; action planning, setting objectives... A simpler version of The Kolb Circle is known as the Learning Cycle. It too has four key elements when applied to teaching and learning: * Have an experience,

* Observe and assess the experience,
* Generalise from the experience,
* Take action.
In order to provide effective and efficient evaluation, it is paramount that a programmed approach is adopted. The assessment should be planned with the learner so that a suitable method of assessment can be agreed upon. It is quite often the case that the most suitable form is by means of visual observation supported by the use of digital media, in a work place environment. The assessment should then be completed using the agreed method whilst also questioning the learner. The questions should be ‘OPEN’ initially, (“Who...?”, “Why...?”, or “What...?”), and then funnelled into ‘CLOSED’ questions such as “Can...?”, “Did...?”, or “Have...?” This will assist the assessor in teasing information from the learner. The assessment details then need to be recorded in any of a variety of forms. This could be using digital media such as voice recording or video, (both of which need to be supported by...