Month: March 2010

Sensemaking mechanisms in the workplace

Human activity, including the activity of work, is not in itself sufficicent for the experience of learning.  The learning value of an activity is in the extent to which the activity incorporates sensemaking mechanisms.  Dewey noted: “mere activity does not constitute experience” (1966, p. 146) and “educative value of… activities… depends upon the extent in which they aid in bringing about a sensing of the meaning of what is going on” [ibid, p. 246].  In terms of learning in the context of work, this means that simply engaging in work and carrying out work tasks may not be sufficient. For learning to occur from work, sensemaking mechanisms must be present in work activity or these may be purposefully designed into work (eitehr by individuals themselves or by organisations).

What are the sensemaking mechanisms that are already naturally inherent in work?  Is there any research on this?