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This week’s reading brought back the vague memory about the concepts of single-loop learning and double-loop learning that I heard about years ago. But my understanding stayed at the elementary recognition of that we should be brave enough to question the crux of the matter. After finishing the three readings, it gave me a systematic understanding of the double loop learning.

Argyris (1991) illustrated the differences between single-loop learning and double-loop learning by the example of a thermostat. The single-loop learning example is that a thermostat automatically turns on the heat whenever the room temperature drops below 68 degrees. While double-loop learning will question that “why am I set at 68 degrees?” and then explore whether or not some other temperature might more economically achieve the goal of heating the room. 

It is easy for us to fall into the habitual thinking based on our experience or even worse, our intuition. We get used to the way we are thinking and the way we are doing things, especially when everything seems go normal. For example, why should I even bother making changes since our SHV is increasing smoothly? We would just continue to do what we are good at. As a matter of a fact, it might be one of the reasons that we did not get enough SHV as we expected this round. The double-loop learning not only helps organisations grow, but on the way it helps us establish our professional knowledge and skills; it also helps individuals jump out from some mistaken underlying assumptions.

People who rarely experience failure, however, end up not knowing how to deal with what effectively (Argyris, 1991). Actually, we are happy that we did not do as well as we expected. This us a fantastic opportunity to have a deep CRR (critical reflection or reflexivity) (Synnott, 2013) and discussion about the current situation and strategy, thereby figure out what is really going wrong. This will certainly help us improve on our current SHV.

I have to say the game is getting more and more intriguing and exciting because of the complexity and unpredictability. It is the time for our team to have a harsh reasoning process.


Reference list:

Argyris, C. (1991). Teaching smart people how to learn. Reflections, 4(2), 4--15

Synnott, M. (2013). Reflection and double loop learning: The case of HS2. Teaching Public Administration, 31(1), 124--134. doi:10.1177/0144739413479950


  1. Hey Myra!

    First of all, you've spent a significant portion of your reflection describing the theories without actually talking about how they are helpful. While this demonstrates the lower orders of Blooms Taxonomy, it doesn't go further than application. You can benefit further by going into detail at exactly how the theory can be applied to our problems and provide additional examples outside the scope of mgmt 300. It would also be beneficial if you were to be more critical in the readings if you said yourself you've already heard of the theories, what really changed your opinion of them now.

    Overall, the quality of your writing has significantly improved, however, the contents of your reflection still require some work. In order to improve your writing, you must expand the points you are making and try to take into consideration of alternative theories/explanations/circumstances that may have caused whatever you have encountered. While you have proficiency in providing the fundamentals of reflective writing, you have to provide more substance to improve the quality of your arguments.

    1. Yes, I tend to agree. 

  2. Hi Myra! I liked how you have written in clear, well structured sentences without droning on. You are proficient in what you are saying. In regards to the content I feel you have definitely grasped the understanding in the readings and I would gauge you to be in the middle of blooms' taxonomy. Maybe if you were to relate the theory to a situation you find yourself in for an example it would be a little bit better. I think you have made some good points in bringing up the question of our SHV, and why we didnt perform as well as possible. I hope we can engage in some CRR as well as it will be a great opportunity to improve. Keep up the good work!