Learning a new skill? Start by finding its locus of difficulty

Discover how every skill has a 'locus of difficulty'

Skills, they are as diverse as they come. It's not just a matter of differentiation between hard and soft skills. Every skill is learned in a different way, which makes transferability between skills often quite limited. This unique complexity of each skill is due to what experts call the 'locus of difficulty'. Each skill has a different aspect that makes them a challenge to learn and master.

Japanese versus dieting

Let's put it this way. Ever wondered what it would be like to learn a new language like Japanese and, at the same time, stick to a strict diet? The challenges you'll face in each scenario will be quite unique. In mastering Japanese, you'd have to tackle expanding your vocabulary, deciphering grammar, and interpreting pronunciation. In contrast, sticking to a diet would involve a battle of wills, recognizing and counteracting your subconscious tendency to crave fatty and sweet foods when you're tired.

This is where the expert educators at our capability academies come into play. They can pinpoint the 'locus of difficulty' for the specific skill you're eager to enhance and provide targeted feedback to help you overcome obstacles.

The case of skill transfer

Scott Young, an accomplished writer and programmer with a passion for understanding how we learn, has explored the concept of 'skill transfer'. His research indicates that the extent to which learning one skill helps us learn another depends on how much the two skills overlap. The more similar the processes or knowledge required for each skill, the greater the transfer between them. 

Moreover, as we gain more experience with a skill, our understanding of it tends to shift from a superficial level to a more abstract one. And as we become more proficient, our knowledge moves from being something we consciously think about to something we do automatically. These shifts can influence how much one skill aids in learning another. 

At Komensky, we leverage these insights to create a comprehensive learning environment that supports learners at all stages of skill acquisition. By doing so, we help you to not only understand what you're learning but also how best to learn it.

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