Formal and Informal Sources of Learning and Development


Adults are expected to become independent learners and to motivate themselves to learn. Learning can take place through many activities such as:

Formal Sources of Learning & Development Opportunities

  • Formal Training courses (see topic 2.7 for ‘Training’)
  • Distance Learning courses
  • The SCILS website provides a large range of learning materials for distance learning, a weekly news desk and discussion boards where people can ask others working in a similar field to provide them with helpful information and tips about how particular issues, problems and situations can be tackled.
  • Research e.g. on the internet (using reliable websites)
  • Reading professional publications, journals and periodicals.
  • Reading relevant books
  • Team meeting discussions

Informal Sources of Learning & Development Opportunities

  • It is also possible to learn from significant personal life experiences e.g. those involving loss, bereavement, becoming disabled etc. and from the expertise by experience of service users and carers.
  • Feedback from colleagues, supervisors, assessors, clients and their informal carers enables you to make a balanced assessment of your abilities and performance.
  • Reflective Practice is a process which enables us to achieve a clear understanding of the impact we have when going about our work and identify what we have done well and areas where we need to improve.
  • Reading reliable newspapers (i.e. not the red tops but broadsheets) about health and social care issues such as reports on changes in the law, cases of abuse, public inquiries etc.
  • Watching/listening to relevant television or radio documentaries on relevant subjects e.g. abuse in care homes, fostering and adoption, disabled people’s history and rights etc.

Use to answer question 2.2g of the Care Certificate

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