Things to Consider Regarding the Stages of Learning
- Transitions between learning stages cannot be clearly delineated.
- One stage blends into the next.
- A learner can be in different stages for learning different skills.
- Stages of learning are not dependent on age.
Models of Stages of Learning
- Fitts and Posner's three-stage model
- Gentile's two-stage model
Learner at the Cognitive Stage
- Introduced to a new motor skill
- Develops an understanding of the movement's requirements
- Attempts numerous techniques and strategies; a trial-and-error approach
- Reformulates past movement experiences in an effort to solve the current movement problem
- Needs guidance to detect and correct errors
Learner at the Associative Stage
- Is committed to refining one particular movement pattern
- Performs more consistently, with fewer errors
- Is better at detecting errors and developing strategies to eliminate them
- Needs constructive practice experiences and effective feedback from practitioner
Learner at the Autonomous Stage
- Can perform a skill proficiently
- Can perform multiple tasks simultaneously
- Performs consistently and confidently, with few errors
- Can detect and correct those errors that are made
- May become discouraged and unmotivated if proficiency comes slowly
- Practitioner serves as motivator
Getting the Idea of the Movement
- Learner's goal:
- Develop an understanding of movement requirements and the environment in which task is to be performed
- Organize a corresponding movement
- Instruction and practice should facilitate the development of a basic movement pattern.
- Learner's goal: Refinement of the skill
- Closed skills
- Example: Performing on a balance beam
- Open skills
- Closed skills with inter-trial variability
- Example: Shooting a hockey puck from various angles and positions; golf putting
Inferring ProgressIndicators That Learning Has Occurred
- Movement pattern
- Knowledge and memory
- Error detection and correction
Improvements in Movement Pattern
- Increase in coordination and control
- More fluid muscle activity
- More efficient energy expenditure
- Increased consistency
- Attention to skill execution:
- As skill proficiency develops, the need to attend consciously to each aspect of the movement decreases—and performance becomes virtually automatic.
- Allocation of visual attention:
Skilled performers direct attention to relevant areas.
Beginners have difficulty discriminating between relevant and irrelevant cues.
- Performance curves:
- Negatively accelerating curve
- Positively accelerating curve
- Linear curve
- S-shaped curve
- Retention tests
- Transfer tests
Limitations of Performance Curves
- Represent temporary effects and cannot establish relative permanence.
- Constructed from measurements that are often obtained by calculating the mean of several trials.
- Each trial could be very different.
- Period of time during the learning process in which no obvious changes in performance occur.
- May be a transitional period in the learning process.
Not necessarily an indication that learner has stopped learning.
- Possible reasons:
- Fatigue, anxiety, lack of motivation
- Limitations in type of performance measurement being used