Imagine this scenario. You are in an interview. The interviewer asks you the following question: “Can you tell me about a book you have read in the past year that has influenced you?” How would you answer this question? For many college students, there would be a long period of silence.
No matter your major or career choice, there is much to learn on your own. Learning in this case can come from books, seminars/ workshops, websites, processional journals, and from your experience and from that of others.
It’s hard to develop a passion for continuous learning. Here’s an approach you can use:
- Approach the continuous learning process as something you need to develop for yourself. In effect, you need to learn how to learn on your own
■ How can you motivate yourself to learn on your own?
■ How do you learn best (e.g. time of day, material covered at one time)?
■ How do you reinforce what you learn (e.g. self-practice, teach someone else)
- Try out the self-learning on something finite. You might try to teach yourself somethingthat is fairly quick to learn that has immediate application. Some examples of this include a dish you want to learn how to cook, a computer application, a video game, a new sport.
- Set up a routine for self-learning. This would involve preparing a specific learning goal, setting a time schedule for achieving your goal, and developing smaller learning tasks that can be accomplished each week.
- Develop a plan for using the material you learned. There are a couple of ways to do this:
■ Teaching someone else
■ Using the content in some practical application
- Move to the next self-learning activity – One of the keys to self-learning is the continual pursuit of new knowledge. Each time you fulfill a learning goal, achieving the next one becomes easier.
Once you have fulfilled three self-learning objectives, a passion for self-learning sets in. Self-learning will become a part of who you are. Without this passion, you will find yourself bored and stagnant in your career..