Acquisition and transfer of experiential learning from rock climbing to the corporate workplace
McLeod, Jared Ashely.
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There were three purposes to this study. The first purpose was to determine how learning can be influenced by various factors i~ the rock climbing experience. The second purpose was to examine what people can learn from the rock climbing experience. The third purpose was to investigate whether that learning can transfer from the rock climbing experience to the subjects' real life in the workplace. Ninety employees from a financial corporation in the Niagara Region volunteered for this study. All subjects were surveyed throughout a one-day treatment. Ten were purposefully selected one month later for interviews. Ten themes emerged from the subjects in terms of what was learned. Inspiration, motivation, and determination, preparation, goals and limitations, perceptions and expectations, confidence and risk taking, trust and support, teamwork, feedback and encouragement, learning from failure, and finally, skills and flow. All participants were able to transfer what was learned back to the workplace. The results of this study suggested that subjects' learning was influenced by their ability to: take risks in a safe environment, fail without penalty, support each other, plan without time constraints, and enjoy the company of fellow workers that they wouldn't normally associate with. Future directions for research should include different types of treatments such as white water rafting, sky diving, tall ship sailing, or caving.