The social aspect of learning is an important contributor to success or failure in education and has received a lot of attention, especially in recent years, to the point where there is now talk of a ‘social turn’ (Block, 2003). This refers to a recognition of the fact that learners are not simply individual processors of information but instead are human beings, who bring previous experiences, feelings and motivations to the classroom. People are members of numerous social networks and these affect many aspects of their learning, from what they consider worthy of learning in the first place, to the support they get while learning. As a result, education now places much more emphasis on the social aspect of learning and the ways learners can learn with and from each other. Workshops are ideally suited for social learning, with their emphasis on learning by doing, and learning in pairs and groups. Below we look at some aspects of social learning that workshops can support.
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