The Application of Self-directed Learning in the Local Level Workplace


Wu H., Atar E.

ASR CHIANG MAI UNIVERSITY JOURNAL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES AND HUMANITIES, vol.0, no.0, pp.1-30, 2022 (ESCI)

Abstract

Purpose: The knowledge economy has made the half-life of information shorter and shorter. People need to commit to lifelong learning in the workplace in order to cope with changing professional requirements. However, corporate training in China currently suffers from a low return on investment, unsatisfactory training outcomes, limited staff training time and poor training coverage. As one of the fundamental theories in adult education, self-directed learning (SDL) has great application to corporate training in China. The purpose of this study is to investigate the implementation of SDL in  the Chinese workplace.

 

Design/Methodology/Approach: The research follows an interpretivist research paradigm under which qualitative approach was utilised, using interview and inductive methods to explore the relatively general findings on the implementation of SDL in the workplace. A Chinese company was used as the research subject and the findings can provide inspiration and implications for Chinese companies.

 

Findings: The research has resulted in three main outcomes: The author has developed an SDL system in the workplace from the perspective of the organisation; an elemental model of SDL in the workplace from the perspective of learning theory ; and an operational model of SDL programme development in the workplace from the perspective of training managers.

 

Limitations: SDL should consider educational,  psychological and sociological perspectives. However, this study mainly takes the perspectives of education and psychology but lacks the expansion in sociology. The lack of direct experience in participating in and operating the SDL process has left the findings open to further validation and refinement.