Deliberative Practice

BarroMetrics Views: Deliberative Practice

So far we have been considering the pre-cursors to the learning experience: the roles a coachee and coach play in the former’s education. We now turn to the crux of the Ericson‘s learning model.

If we turn to Figure  1, we see that Myelin backs the process. Myelin is a ‘sheath’ that covers our neural pathways.  It takes time to form over a pathway; the thicker the sheath, the faster the transmission. It’s now found that Myelin is one of the primary drivers of our habits and unconscious processes. We can liken Myelin to the clearing of jungle track. In the beginning, the clearing takes time and effort.  After, a critical point, the cleared path is easy to navigate. And, with constant use, the path remains cleared so that we move through it without conscious effort.

Now, the thing about Myelin is it takes time and practice to grow.

The first question that arises is: what type of practice best develops Myelin?

Coyle  calls the practice “Deep Practice“, Ericson calls it ‘Deliberative Practice‘. In each case, the components are the same:

  1. The desired outcome of the practice is improvement. The more specifically you describe the desired outcome, the better and faster you’ll attain it.
  2. Identify the component of the desired skill.
  3. Schedule sessions of 60-minutes (no more than 240-minutes per day) with a specific learning outcome for each session.
  4. Ensure that each session’s outcome is just out of current reach – i.e. the session will involve some discomfort as we struggle with new learning.
  5. Act on the new learning.
  6. Compare the results of (5) with the desired outcome – note the gap.
  7. Create a new learning goal, session and action to close the gap.
  8. Repeat (5) to (7) until we internalise the session.
  9. Move to the next component part and repeat (5) to (8) until the we have learned the desired skill.

The key to this process is the word ‘deliberative’ – you are not just working harder, you are working deliberatively towards your desired outcome.

In the next blog, I’ll consider the Question 2, and how Deliberative  Practice works for traders.

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