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Exploring Kolb's Experiential Learning Cycle

David Kolb developed his theory of experiential learning for adult learning building on the work of Piaget, Lewin and Dewey.

His cycle of learning, although not without its criticisms (Audio clip) , is a fundamental model and is widely quoted in the literature. You can find out more about the [theoretical basis] for his theory

Kolb Cycle

The four stages of the learning process

Concrete Experience
having an experience, active involvement

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- br /> observing what has happened and reflecting

Abstract Conceptualism
making sense of what has happened, linking it to what you already know

Active Experimentation
planning what to do next, experimenting with different applications and approaches

So actively doing a task leads to reflection and review to understanding and then planning what to do next.

Key Points:

• For effective learning to take place you need to go round the cycle
• You can start at any point on the cycle
• The cycle can be repeated to reinforce the learning

Next >
 Applying Kolb's Cycle to Your Teaching