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Thursday, September 19, 2013


Here are three words for your consideration:

Pedagogy = Others-directed learning = the skills/process of directing the learning of others, deciding what they will learn and how they will learn it.

Andragogy = Self-directed learning = the skills/processes of deciding what others will learn, then allowing them great autonomy in reaching those outcomes.

Heutagogy = Self-determined learning = the learner decides what is to be learned and how to engage in that learning process.

On a continuum, they look like this:

Pedagogy                                  Andragogy                                    Heutagogy
(others-directed)                        (self-directed)                         (self-determined)

As you think back on the stuff you’ve learned over the years 
(like riding a bike, constructing sentences, the quadratic formula, how to garden, the state capitals, playing bridge, the periodic table, bow hunting, etc.), 
you have engaged in all three of the “gogys” at some point in time.

Here’s the question:  Which of those “gogys” provides the learner with the highest levels of engagement and interest?

If you’re like most folks, the further to the right you move on the continuum, the greater your level of interest/engagement in the learning task.

For those of us who make learning happen for a living, there are real implications for how we hone our craft.


  1. Nicole Bevilacqua9/19/2013 08:16:00 AM

    Love this! I just hosted an event for over 200 professionals that was a combination of andragogy and heutagogy principles and have gotten great feedback. People were nervous at first because they weren't sure what was expected but once the realized they were in charge of creating and meeting their own expectations and outcomes it was amazing to see the engagement, energy, and learning breakthroughs that took place! I often think back to the Wheatley book, Leadership is the New Science, we read in your class and how I can incorporate some of those ideas into the work I'm doing with professional development. Best class ever! ;) And I'm loving your blog! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  2. Excellent news, NB. I know we can't completely abandon pedagogy, but any time we can incorporate andragogy/heutagogy into the formatting I think we'll see the kind of energy you witnessed.

    And, thanks for the kind words. Means a ton coming from you.


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