Thursday, December 23, 2010

Mastery is a Myth


We need to challenge individuals by continuously raising the learning bar- mastery in learning is a myth.

Learning is continuous growth fueled by wonderment leading to discovery.When we place arbitrary benchmarks on any learning continuum, and then deem one on the high end of the continuum to be mastery, we do a disservice to learning. The most profoundly intelligent among us are those who understand implicitly that they have everything to learn. The term mastery by definition connotes exactly the opposite of this idea...
-mastery [ˈmɑːstərɪ]
n pl -teries
1. full command or understanding of a subject
2. outstanding skill; expertise
3. the power of command; control
4. victory or superiority
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003
With the exception perhaps of definition number two, mastery in the context of learning seems to connote control, command, power and superiority; elements contrary to the idea that no matter how much we think we know, pushing the parameters of discovery requires curiosity, humility and the perspective that there are no limits to how much we can learn.

There are no objective definitions of failure, therefore there should be no objective definitions of success. In learning, mastery is a myth.
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