There is evidence that, in the workplace, self-directed learners…
1. adapt to changes in their environments better
Guglielmino, L. (1977). Development of the Self-Directed Learning Readiness Scale. Dissertation Abstracts International, 38, 6467.
2. remain resilient in the face of challenges and obstacles
Zsiga, P.L. (2008). Self-directed learning in directors of a US nonprofit organization. International Journal of Self-Directed Learning, 5(2), 35–49.
3. demonstrate enhanced performances in their jobs
Artis, A.B. and Harris, E.G. (2007). Self-directed learning and sales force performance: an integrated framework. Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, Vol. 27 No. 1, pp. 9-24.
4. exhibit superior critical thinking and questioning skills
Candy, P.C. (1991). Self-direction for Lifelong Learning: A Comprehensive Guide to Theory and Practice. San Francisco, CA : Jossey-Bass.
5. demonstrate increased confidence and problem solving capabilities
Durr, R.E. (1992). An examination of readiness for self-directed learning and personnel variable at a large Midwestern electronics development and manufacturing corporation. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL.
6. actively share knowledge and build networks with others
Rowland, F. and Volet, S. (1996). Self-direction in community learning: a case study. Australian Journal of Adult and Community Education, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 89-102.
7. show stronger emotional commitment
Cho, D. and Kwon, D. (2005), Self-directed learning readiness as an antecedent of organizational commitment: a Korean study. International Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 140-52.
8. find their jobs more meaningful
Kops, W.J. (1997). Managers as self-directed learners: findings from the public and private sector organizations. in Long, H.B. and Associates (Ed.), Expanding Horizons in Self-directed Learning, Public Managers Center, College of Education, Norman, OK, pp. 71-86.
9. experience “deep” rather than “surface” learning, and
Stansfield, L.M. (1997), “‘Employee – develop yourself!’ Experiences of self-directed learners”, Career Development International, Vol. 2 No. 6, pp. 261-6.
10. are more likely to realize their potential as leaders.
Klute, M.M., Crouter, A.C., Sayer, A.G., & McHale, S.M. (2002). Occupational self-direction, values, and egalitarian relationships: A study of dual-earner couples. Journal of Marriage and Family, 64, 139–151.
For anyone unfamiliar with the term “self-directed learner”, a reasonable account can be found at http://www.selfdirectedlearning.org/what-is-self-directed-learning
To get an indication of the degree to which you are a self-directed learner, try the Self-Directed Learning Readiness Scale at http://www.lpasdlrs.com/
A Prezi version of this blog entry is available at http://prezi.com/v8eu6aioif2j/advantages-of-self-directed-learners/