Accelerated learning is an advanced learning approach that is used in many organizations today including learning institutions and corporate entities. It is research based and includes a variety of media and techniques. As opposed to the traditional laidback learning approaches where the student assumes a passive role and the trainer actively pushes knowledge his way, accelerated learning is more flexible and open ensuring that every learner is totally involved. It brings in energy and re-humanizes the learning process making it more enjoyable and productive. Accelerated learning methods vary greatly with respect to the structure of the organization, the subject matter in question and the learners. In the words of Jacques Barzun, teaching is not application of a system but rather an exercise in perpetual discretion. The main aim of a learning process is not the method used but rather the results that it gives. Accelerated learning scores highly in this regard. Hundreds of organizations all over the world have embraced accelerated learning and the number of those that are joining in is rising by day. This is because people have discovered that accelerated learning uses proven techniques that enable them to design programs faster, improve measurable learning and enhance the productivity and creativity of employees. In order to be successful in accelerated learning, you need both a skeptical approach and an open mind. Healthy skepticism will enable you to rethink your assumptions to learning and at the same time enable you to maintain a balanced head even as you crunch the dazzling techniques and methods in the accelerated learning process. Openness on the other hand will help you to appreciate that learning is a continual process and no one has seen it all. New possibilities are always knocking at your door and it is up to you to respond with an open mind. Openness will help you to appreciate that nothing is dormant but rather continually evolving. At times, you have to depart from your organizational culture and the way you do things so that you can experience the joy that comes with new approaches. Therefore, having skepticism and openness will help you in distinguishing between the real and the artificial in the learning environment. This will in turn open up better ways of optimizing learning and enjoying even greater success in your tasks. The high metabolism culture that we live in requires that we update our learning approaches so as to meet the demands and challenges of life. The kinds of updates that we need to make are more of systemic rather than cosmetic. We need to move from the mechanistic way of thinking that the conventional learning methods have taught us all through right from the early days of industrial economy. In the learning environment today, standardization, one-size-fits-all and behavioral-conditioning are principles that no longer produce the desired results. These principles were only effective in preparing people for repetitive and dreary tasks. The kind of learning that will produce tangible results is to focus on creating knowledgeable workers and students who have the ability to absorb and adjust to new information. Accelerated learning ignites people’s minds and enhances their psychological powers for thinking, innovating, problem solving and learning. As you go through the chapters of this book, you will appreciate gradually that all of us are in a learning era which is characterized by genuine collaboration, total learning involvement, diversity and variety in learning methods and internal motivation. The survivor and health of organizations and individuals today depends on their ability to learn.
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