Learning is one of the most important processes in a person's life. As a result, there are different learning environments that have been created throughout the history of mankind to help in the passing of knowledge and skills from one generation to another. Different approaches are therefore used to guarantee that the learner is able to gather as much knowledge and skills as possible. Amongst the learning environments and strategies that are being employed in the modern world is the use of an area of practice as a learning environment. This paper will analyze a hospital setup as a learning environment using different learning concepts and theories and make recommendations on the improvements that need to be made to increase the learning ability of students in such an environment. The hospital environment requires staff with high competence and with skills that have not only been learnt in class but rather a combination of class work and fieldwork. This has been found to enhance the service delivery of students whom after learning and practicing at the same time, have an ability to join the workforce and provide the necessary skills and expertise to patients. It is therefore important for one to understand that these skills do not come automatically because somebody has been in class. They need to be learnt practically in the field. According to Barnes (1998, p.279-281), the work environment has been going through a revolution, with each new day creating new challenges that requires news skills and modes of approach. Therefore, every person that aspires to be a practitioner in the medical field has a mandate of keeping oneself updated with these challenges and the solutions that can be utilized to solve these challenges. The hospital as a learning environment therefore provides an excellent learning setup that allows students to interact one on one with what they have learnt in class in a practical way. For example, nursing students have had an opportunity to practice their learning skills and learn new skills that were not learnt in class while working on internship or doing their normal practical subjects during the duration of their studies. While there is much that have been written in the medical world after thorough research has been carried out by doctors and other medical practitioners, there is a limitation on the depth of their insight that is partly contributed by lack of the necessary vocabulary and partly because of the ever changing medical environment (Barnes 1998, p.279-281). Learning Theories
There are various theories that address the issue of practice area as a learning environment. One of these theories is constructivism. This theory argues that human beings are able to emerge with meaning and knowledge when they are exposed to a certain learning environment that creates an element of experience in them. Simply put, through experience, people are able to come up with meaning and knowledge in a particular area of learning. This theory continue to argue that the environment from which one learns is very important in helping such a person to be able assimilate knowledge and skills and internalize it easily through observation and participation. The knowledge and skills that are obtained are integrated into the already existing knowledge and skills since in most cases the learner has a preview of this knowledge and skills (Tobias & Duffy 2009, p.184). Another theory that captures the essence of practice as a way of learning is constructionism. This theory argues that people learn well through participating in the overall learning process. The proponents of this theory compare practical learning with building mathematical models by students in their junior high school. They argue that participating in the overall decision making process while learning induces discipline, responsibility and high level skills in students, providing them an opportunity to integrate these skills into their...
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