Managing Learning & Development at the workplace
Full course description
Why is professional development of employees important to organizations? How can employees improve their knowledge and skills? Why might learning in teams difficult? Why does training not automatically result in increased performance? How can workplace learning be managed?
This course is relevant for students who are interested in individual, team and organizational perspectives on learning and, subsequently, how learning, training and development can be managed. Students are introduced to the emerging field of professional learning of individuals and teams in an organizational setting. The course is based on insights from cognitive and learning sciences as well as organizational studies and human resource development. It analyses learning needs within organizations and identifies key variables that play a role when employees learn in a training setting or informally. Critical factors are identified which stimulate or hinder learning in organizations.
Theoretical insights are applied to the analysis of organizational cases about professional learning. Additionally, students will take on the role of consultants where they interview and advise an existing organization on improving its learning and development policies. The final report contains a scientific reflection on this professional learning practice, which will also be communicated to the organization.
The course consists of two tracks:
1. PBL track: the literature will be discussed in tutorials and students will apply theory to several cases about professional learning. The PBL track will also be assessed through an open book exam.
2. Project track: student teams will act as consultants. They will describe and analyse an organizational case and apply relevant literature. The student teams present their analysis and recommendations in a final report and presentation.
After this course, students will be able to:
• Identify the importance of professional development in organizations;
• Explain concepts and theories of workplace learning in relation to both individual and team learning;
• Apply these concepts and theories of workplace learning to practice;
• Analyse the daily practice of professional development in an organization and formulate suggestions for improvement.
Students need to have an advanced level of written and oral English to be able to engage in discussions, to conduct the interview and to write the report. Students need to be interested in the topics of learning, training and development in organizations.
Specific articles are selected.