A Mixed Methods Study of Leaders’ Perceptions of Microlearning for Professional Development on the Job

George Hanshaw, Janet Hanson


This study investigated the use of mobile microlearning, supported with social learning strategies, and its perceived usefulness as a delivery mode for professional development on the job. The use of computer-mediated communication and microlearning have been explored in educational settings. This study expanded the context to managers and leaders in the aerospace industry (n=15) and healthcare professions (n=20). Data was collected using a self-developed, semi-structured interview protocol and Likert-style survey. A professional development training, using the Graphical Inventory of Ethical Leadership (GIEL) survey tool, was delivered to participants’ mobile devices. Six themes emerged from the inductive analyses of the participants’ responses including: the flexible delivery saves time, maintains leader’s presence on the job, builds team cohesiveness, meets the leaders’ needs for personalizing delivery of the PD/understanding their employees’ learning needs, provides individuals with a voice in the selection of learning opportunities, and the absence of participants’ stated concerns over the use of technology. Conclusions, models for understanding the concepts, and implications for practice are provided.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijld.v8i3.13198


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