Learning is primarily a matter of personal discipline; students cannot be motivated by school or college alone.

Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the statement and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider ways in which the statement might or might not hold true and explain how these considerations shape your position.

Learning, as it is often said, is a lifelong journey, but educators and students alike often treat the learning process as a sequence of discrete steps that must be completed.

This statement is not only an oversimplification but is also wholly incorrect. Learning is a journey that begins at birth and continues through adulthood. The learning process is dynamic, and as students mature, they learn more about themselves and how they learn. For this reason, learning cannot always be directly attributed to school or college. When the statement, “Learning is primarily a matter of personal discipline,” was made, it referred to memorization and rote learning, things that directly conflicted with the purpose of schooling. Today, however, learning is much more dynamic, and learning can occur with the aid of technology or an individual’s surroundings. Even conventional learning, such as in classrooms, can be facilitated by the use of technology. The use of technology in classrooms, such as interactive whiteboards and tablets, allows students to more fully engage in the learning process and learn at their own pace.

Additionally, students can learn in unconventional ways, such as reading books, watching movies, and listening to podcasts. This diversity of learning provides a more engaging experience, and students are motivated to learn because they choose to do so.

The second reason that learning cannot always be attributed to school or college is that learning can be promoted by the environment in which an individual lives. For example, a student studying in Chicago might benefit from learning with the college’s debate team members. The student might gain a greater insight into the field of debate by interacting with these professionals, and they might gain the confidence necessary to excel in debate. Likewise, a student whose school is located in a rural or mountainous region might better learn to ski by spending time on the mountain. The student might gain a greater awareness of nature and the environment. Therefore, learning does not always have to be directly related to school or college, and individual students might learn from their settings.

The third reason that learning does not necessarily require a school or college is that learning can be promoted through peer groups. Peer group learning allows students to learn from each other, and peers often serve as role models. For example, the members of a debate team or a group that skis together might teach each other valuable skills, such as how to argue a point effectively or overcome fear. Furthermore, peers can act as motivators by praising and encouraging each other. When peers encourage each other, the members of a peer group are motivated to succeed. Thus, peer group learning fosters individual motivation to learn.

Furthermore, learning can be promoted by role models. Students who study with or listen to specific individuals might learn from them. For example, a student who studies with a musician might learn how to play an instrument, and a student who studies with a famous scientist might learn problem-solving skills. In addition, role models can help students set goals and teach them to persevere. For example, a student might set a goal to learn English because their peers are learning English, and the student might be motivated by the praise they receive from their peers.

Another reason that learning does not necessarily require a school or college is because people are motivated to learn in different ways. Some students learn by being taught and drilling information, and others learn by practicing and experiencing for themselves. Some students learn by interacting with peers, and others prefer solitary study. Therefore, learning is not necessarily a matter of personal discipline, and teachers cannot always motivate students to learn.

The final reason that learning is a process that does not end with school or college is that learning is continuous. Learning a skill such as playing the piano or a new language becomes automatic as students practice it; however, learning more complex skills, such as empathy and critical thinking, takes time. For instance, someone might realize that critical thinking is good for understanding the world, but they might not correctly apply that skill in everyday life, and the student might retain little of the lesson. Similarly, a student might develop empathy after watching a heart-wrenching movie, but they might lack the motivation to apply the lesson to their everyday lives. For this reason, learning does not end when students graduate from high school or college.

Learning continues throughout life, and people continue to learn throughout their lives. Since learning is an ongoing process, it does not necessarily require a school or college.