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Transfer of learning in the learning society: How can the barriers between different learning spaces be surmounted, and how can the gap between learning inside and outside schools be bridged?

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For more than a century learning psychology has dealt with the so-called transfer problem: that what has been learned in one context often can be difficult to recall and apply in a different context. This article, building on many years' theoretical and practical work in the field, starts by defining five main learning spaces in contemporary society, arguing that transfer problems usually turn up in relation to the transition of the boundaries between these spaces, and especially between the school and education space and the spaces of everyday life and working life. Focus is then turned to contemporary theories of learning and knowledge and four different learning and knowledge types are described, which are activated in different situations and imply different transfer possibilities. Finally, two ways of dealing with the problem in school and educational practice are outlined and discussed.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: The Danish University of Education, Denmark

Publication date: 2009-03-01

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