Understanding Learning Transfer Process in Different Contexts
Khalil M. Dirani
Texas A&M University
Researchers have identified variables likely to foster transfer such as supervisor and peer support, role ambiguity, negative change, job stress, intrinsic and extrinsic incentives, among others (Bates et al., 2000; Colquitt et al., 2000). Traditional learning transfer models such as Baldwin and Ford (1988) model or the learning transfer system inventory (LTSI, Bates et al., 2005) are frequently used to measure factors affecting transfer of training and to help human resource development (HRD) practitioners move beyond the question of whether training works to why training works (Holton et al., 2000). However, little attention has been given to understanding other factors, not included in traditional transfer models in assisting individuals and organizations with the training transfer. In addition, little space has been dedicated to the process of transfer in particular contexts and cultures. This work examines the transfer of training within two distinct cultures: The military context, and the Lebanese business context. This work used self-reported data from individuals in the two contexts in an attempt to understand the process of training transfer and to learn about how different groups transferring the skills and knowledge learned in training to their workplace. Results provide a better understanding on how HRD scholars and practitioners can work with and prepare individuals successfully transfer training skills to the workforce taking into consideration a variety of individual and organizational factors including adult learning principles, motivation to transfer, individual and organizational engagement, peers, and supervisors’ support.
Dr. Dirani is an Associate Professor and Programme chair for the Education and Human Resource Development (EHRD) program in the Department of Educational Administration and Human Resource Development (HRD) at Texas A&M University. Khalil’s research focus is on: (a) international HRD, (b) learning organizations in Lebanon and the Middle East region, (c) leadership and talent development, and (d) transfer of learning practices and theories across cultures. He developed the Arabic version of the Dimensions of the Learning Organization Questionnaire (Watkins & Marsick 1993), which was implemented by Arab scholars in Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. His articles have appeared in both research and professional publications such as Human Resource Development Quarterly, Human Resource Development International, International Human Resource Management, Advances in International Management, and European Journal for Training & Development. Most recently, Dr. Dirani, published a co-edited book titled ‘Leadership development in emerging market economies’, published by Palgrave Macmillan (Ardichvili & Dirani, 2017). He teaches several courses related to his research interests including Organization Development, Career Development, Training and Development, Evaluation, Research Methods, and Statistics. Dr. Dirani serves his community and the field of HRD in different leadership capacities. He served as board member for the Academy of Human Resources Development (AHRD) from 2013-2016 and serves on the AHRD Ethics committee since 2014. In addition, he serves on three different journal boards and is a reviewer for seven journals.
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