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Title: Learning transfer as “Preparedness” : a phenomenological study of computer and video game player
Author: Ó Súilleabháin , Gearóid
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2012
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Learning transfer has been the subject of research and debate since the time at least of the publication of seminal articles by Thorndike and Woodworth (1901) with regard to the specificity of its effects. Over the intervening period there have been many reconstructions and reinterpretations of the concept, as well as calls to abandon it entirely as a way to study the influence of prior learning in new learning contexts. Against this background a research question is posed which deliberately does not begin with the concept of learning transfer but asks rather: how do prior learning and experience interplay with or support new learning efforts in the negotiation of novel learning or performance challenges? The influence of prior learning and experience is, after Brallsford and Schwartz (1999), operationalised as "preparedness for future learning" in a phenomenological study of computer and video game players (n=9) of varying levels of past experience as they make their way through a series of novel game-based challenges. The key data gathering methods are those of concurrent think aloud and retrospective stimulated recall. Analysis culminates in a model of transfer as preparedness based around the interplay of four constructs - those of performance, preparedness, new learning, and felt experience. Preparedness emerges from this model as something which, at its deepest core, provides the extensive non explicit background without which even the "unsuccessful" meeting of any performance or learning challenge would not be possible. Preparedness, however, it also suggested, does not bring the learner "all the way" in terms of manifest acts of transfer or performance without some kind of active negotiation with other elements of the model. A final chapter offers discussion with regard to the differences between this model and the original work of Bransford and Schwartz (1999), as well as some reflections on the validity and limitations of the study findings and their implications for practice, policy and future research.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available