Re: Pay for Learning LO1415

Tobin Quereau (
Mon, 29 May 1995 08:51:30 -0500 (CDT)

Replying to LO1402 --

On Sat, 27 May 1995, Dr. Ivan Blanco wrote:

[...snipped some interesting stuff re: learning and sports]

> Still, paying for knowledge is for the most part a utopia, because we
> don't have the "tools" to measure knowledge. Thus the reliance on
> performance, and not on potential!

This is the part that I find interesting. I believe that the thread
started out concerning pay for "learning" and has broadened its focus
since then. I would like to give a couple of examples of where I see
people being paid for learning. In corporate research and development
areas and in academic research for sure, I see people being paid to learn
about something new. And in a rather crude way, they are typically paid
for their "knowledge" as well--at least when they are hired! The problem
is, as Ivan has pointed out, once we have decided someone is worthy of
being paid to join us, we generally stop paying them on that basis and
move to longevity as the crucial basis since it is much less ambiguous
and controversial.

In my job as Coordinator of Staff and Organizational Learning at Austin
Community College I set for myself the task of spending _at least_ 10% of
my time on the job learning to be better at what I do. I consider this
listserve as a major component of that learning, and probably spend about
3-4 hours a week on learning from it. I also read several journals and
magazines in a wide range of areas (though I must admit that they usually
fall into the lunchtime and "afterwork" category someone else
mentioned...). I also try to attend two to three professional conferences
each year and monthly meetings of the local NSPI chapter. I may be quite
lucky because of my position, the fact that I am in the higher education
rather than business context, and that I have easy access to the Internet,
but I have a feeling that if others began to look at what they do to
continue learning the differences might not be as great as one would
think. In any case, I figure if I can't provide a model of what I am
encouraging, what business do I have telling others to get with it?

How about it? What percent of your time do you manage to spend in
"learning" at your job? In what ways does your employer support that
learning (if at all)? Is the amount of time you spend learning something
that you could increase in some appropriate way? Are you able to
demonstrate the value of learning in your own job if someone asks you to?

I have a feeling that many of you must spend a great deal of time in
learning since I can see the results on my screen every day.

I'd like to hear how it is for others....

Tobin Quereau