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Scott Schopieray

4 A’s of Learning Model as a means of promoting reflective practice

2 min read

As I was reading through a book this morning I was struck by a section outlining the "4 A's of Learning" a stage-based model they list as 

Acquire :: Anchor :: Activity
Automatic :: Add :: Analysis
Application :: Apply :: Abstraction
Always :: Away :: Application

This model has also been written about as being ANCHOR, ADD, APPLY, and AWAY, or also Activity, Analysis, Abstraction, and Application. 

I don't love the particular words used here, but these stages could be an interesting model to use when thinking about working toward habits of reflective practice. 

Acquire is the initial modeling we do with someone as part of the introduction, getting them to do it once in a very bounded context.

Automatic is moving them toward doing it in a very specific way (E.g. bowling bumpers) with some sort of fluency/frequency but still very directed and bounded (this speaks to a colleague’s point about needing to tell people what to do, and it becomes something they can do with the prompt immediately and automatically) - process of learning, repetition and practice within the bounds. 

Application is where the issue of transfer comes in… they are able to start to do it on their own, without prompts/guidance, and more generalized across their work/life

Always is the point where they have a consistent practice that is being tuned, maintained, etc.