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Singapore AirlinesDissertation

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Learning & Development: A case of Transfer of Learning for Cabin Crews at Singapore Airlines 15/04/2015

Executive Summery

This is a study that delves into the issue of the transfer if learning from training programs for newly recruited cabin crews in Singapore airline. The study was conducted based on primary and secondary data. Primary data was collected from a survey among the trainee cabin crews of the airline as well as from line managers, service managers and training managers. The study reveals that there is a general lack of transfer among the cabin crew in the airline. The study has indicated a general lack of transfer of learning in Singapore Airlines as is evident from the survey and interviews as well as study of literature. The lacking in transfer is due to a number of hindrances that are outside the scope of training. Behaviors and attitude of seniors and peers, lack of proper evaluation of transfer of learning, faulty curriculum to an extent, lack of coordination between various departments and the limited role of the line managers are some of the reasons for the lack of transfer of learning in the company.

A number of recommendations have been made for the enhanced transfer of learning for the company. these include updating the curriculum, increasing coordination between departments, better evaluation of transfer of learning and greater role of the HR in evaluating and conduct of the raining in pace of the cabin crew managers.

Contents

Introduction 3

The Research question 7

Aims and Objectives Objective Statements to answer the research question 7

Literature Review 8

Introduction 8

Early Research on Transfer of Learning 9

Factors to effective Transfer of Learning 12

Operationalizing Transfer and Measurement 14

Theory and Research on Factors Affecting Transfer 17

Conclusion 21

Research Methodology 22

Introduction 22

Approaches to Methodology 23

Outline of research Method and the Research Onion 24

Data collection 27

Sample selection and Size 29

Obstacles in Research 31

Ethical Considerations in Research 31

Limitations of the study 32

Conclusion 33

Findings, Critical Analysis & Discussion 34

Introduction 34

Singapore Airlines outlook to training 35

Cabin Crew Training Policies & Practices 36

Enabling learning Transfer through Motivation 39

Survey Findings 40

Discussions of findings 43

Employee Engagement and Motivation 43

Job Satisfaction Affecting Learning Transfer 44

Effect of Learning Transfer of Colleagues 45

Training Relevance to Real Life Situations 46

Evaluation of Training at Singapore Airlines 46

Factors Hindering Learning Transfer 48

Conclusion 49

Conclusions and Recommendations 49

Introduction 49

Recommendations 50

Scope for Further Research 53

Conclusion 55

References 56

Appendices 61

Introduction

The effective and continual applying of knowledge, skills and attitudes that are acquired during the process of classroom learning and training to the practical field or job is termed as transfer of learning. The application of the knowledge, skills and attitudes that are learned from experiencing a situation on similar situations with effectiveness is also called transfer of learning (Leberman, McDonald and Doyle, 2006). Experts believe that combination of classroom learning and practical experience and its application expedites the learning process.

In the modern times, the transfer of learning generally refers to the process where transfer sources or the past experience of tackling a situation is effectively extended to the tackling of a new situation that is also known as the target of the transfer.

The theoretical approaches and frameworks that are applied for the process of transfer of learning are can be categorized into four broad principles. They are

The division of transfer of learning into various categories by the taxonomical approach (Haskell, 2001)

The focus driven approach of the development and contributions of different disciplines that is application domain driven

The faculties transfer models that involve the examination of the psychological functions to transfer and The revelation, comparison and contrasting of theoretical and empirical traditions that is driven by concept evaluation (Haskell, 2001).

The classroom is the first place to practice transfer of learning. The transfer of new skills and knowledge to the job can be made much easier by this method. The use of the previous learning for better performance in a new situation is affected by the efficient transfer of learning. If this transfer of learning from previous situations does not happen to learning from new situations, then learning process for every new situation would have to begin from scratch (Kneppers et al., 2007).

The process of transfer of learning is facilitated by the inclusion of task variations along with the teachings and the learning materials in the classroom or in training. This facilitates the enhancement and hastens the transfer process when compared to just simple classroom teaching to the job environment. The process of task variations enables a learner to get accustomed to a situation where the learner can use the learning from and ply the same to the job (Demirer and Sahin, 2013).

A deeper understanding of a task and quick learning is possible when a part of the previously learned knowledge and skills are brought into play in a new learning session. Therefore, it can be said that a positive and effective transfer of learning is possible when the transfer of learning is practiced in a number of conditions and environments. The introduction of variations however creates a bottleneck in the learning transfer process in the beginning, as there is some degree of confusion about the application of previously learnt knowledge and skills (Kneppers et al., 2007). However, the process hastens up soon enough with the efficient application of previously acquired knowledge and skills. This creation of task-based transfer of knowledge is necessary to enable the learners to learn the transfer of their knowledge and skills acquired to practical situations. The environment of the training or learning for a job needs to be conducive to this aspect of knowledge transfer to enable the smooth transfer of knowledge and skills by the trainees to the job at hand.

The two main principles that are useful in the efficient transfer of knowledge and skills learned in a classroom environment aided by task variations is to ensure that the variations are not too easy and the transfer of learning is progressive and yet happens at a rapid pace so that the learners do not lose focus of the transfer.

This process of transfer of learning is beneficial in transferring the learned skills and knowledge to new situations. It can be said that the transfer of knowledge and skills to a job is a continuous process. As a learner, an employee should always be open to learning. While for new employees that transfer of knowledge and skills would happen for the first time after they undergo training and learning process to get them job ready, for experienced employees, the transfer of previously acquired knowledge and skills from previous experiences and their transfer and use in a new situation is a continuous process (Demirer and Sahin, 2013). The learning process from situations and conditions enables employees to be able to transfer the knowledge and skills to tackle and solve new situations and problems.

There are several theories that are associated with the transfer of knowledge and skills to a new situation or job. These theories deal with the process of learning and transfer.

The near and far learning transfer theory deals with the process of application of the knowledge and skills acquired previously to situations. The near transfer of skills and knowledge happens when a learner or an employee uses a set of pre-acquired skills and knowledge to situations in the same way every time (Kneppers et al., 2007). This process of learning transfer is applicable for repetitive tasks or tasks that require the same procedure to be followed every time and in the order. The advantage of this type of learning transfer is that it is easy to train and transfer and has a high success rate owing to the repetitive nature of the transfer. However, the disadvantage is that this style of transfer does not allow the adaptation of the skills and knowledge previously acquired to changes in situations and scenarios (Cree and Macaulay, 2000).

Far transfer of learning refers to the application of the knowledge and skills acquired previously to changing situations. This transfer of learning requires the adoption and adaption of guidelines for the transfer in changing situations. This style is suited for transfer of the knowledge and skills acquired previously to situations that vary and required changes to be made in the transfer order of skills and knowledge. The style is suited for application of transfer of learning for situations that are varied and different from one another. The advantage of this style of transfer of learning is that this allows the learner to adapt the skills to varying situations. However, the process of transfer of knowledge for this style is difficult to achieve and the success rate is generally lower than that of near transfer process (Demirer and Sahin, 2013).

Another theory for transfer of learning is the Low Road/High Road Theory.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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