Lifelong Learning in The Army: Building Better Leaders

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 830 |

Pages: 2|

5 min read

Published: Aug 4, 2023

Words: 830|Pages: 2|5 min read

Published: Aug 4, 2023

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Importance of Hands-on Training in Lifelong Learning
  3. Critical Thinking and Learning in the Army
  4. Development of Better Leaders in the Army
  5. Conclusion
  6. Works Cited


This essay is to inform you on lifelong learning, the army, hands-on training, ownership of learning and critical thinking, and how it builds leaders. Lifelong learning (SBT) is the ongoing, voluntary, and self-motivated pursuit of knowledge for professional or personal reasons. SBT started in the 21st century. It replaced the lectures Soldiers sat through prior to. The Army started this style at Advanced Individual Training (AIT) level. “SBT relies heavily on three of the basic tenets of adult learning theory: experience (including mistakes) provides the basis for learning; adults are most interested in learning subjects that have immediate relevance to their jobs or personal life; and adults learn best when learning is problem-centered rather than content-oriented.” (Wyche 2013). Soldiers bring SBT to their units after graduating. SBT carries the Army into the new age of training.

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Importance of Hands-on Training in Lifelong Learning

Lifelong Learning starts with Hands-on training. Hands-on learning trains Soldiers by field exercises. Major General Wyche says, “SBT includes real-world scenarios to encourage the transfer of learning to field expectations and draws on the use of troubleshooting and diagnosing to solve problems.” This statement outlines how learning in the field and problems from the field are better for learning. (Wyche 2013). Trainers give brief introductions to the lesson. After the brief Soldiers practice those skills in the field. Soldiers encounter real problems in training. Soldiers solve problems by trying different solutions. Groups conduct field training to help each other. Group training gives soldiers different views on problems. (Wyche 2013). This training makes Soldiers more successful. Graders test skills on equipment to standard. Soldiers that fail retrain until they pass. This ensures each soldier knows how to complete a task properly. Field training grabs the attention of Soldiers better than lectures. Hands-on training makes Soldiers better at their job. This training style is the biggest benefit of Army lifelong learning.

Critical Thinking and Learning in the Army

Army lifelong learning requires Soldiers to learn on their own and think critically. Soldiers study at home in order to build their skills. Home studying sharpens the skills learned that day. Studying notes from the day is all it takes to accomplish this task. Soldiers retain information learned over time this way too. This process requires Soldiers to think critically when problems happen. Soldiers receive short briefs and have to use that information to solve any problem. Critical thinking applies to the problem at hand using the information briefed. A soldier finds ways to solve the problem as efficiently as possible. Soldiers learn how to apply their skills to any situation that can happen. Robert Schwartzman says, “Tomorrow’s Soldiers will be critical thinkers capable of diagnosing equipment faults on previously unseen equipment by applying knowledge garnered through a systems approach to training.” Home studying and critical thinking is vital to making lifelong learning work.

Development of Better Leaders in the Army

Army lifelong learning develops better leaders. Schwartzman says that lifelong learning is a “competency that is so powerful that it affects the person’s ability to acquire other competencies.” This suggests a learning process that moves from the basic to more advanced with time as leaders experience duties, schooling, and self-education. (Schwartzman 2003). This statement refers to the person’s ability to lead. The Army states that a leader has mental agility and sound judgment. Lifelong learning aids the Soldier in building mental agility. Soldiers acquire knowledge on tasks to overcome tasks. This process builds their ability to think quickly when seeing a problem. In addition, this builds the Soldier’s ability to make sound judgments. Sound judgments are decisions that are right for the task at hand. A leader’s decisions are sound when that leader has a high level of knowledge of their task. Soldiers respect leaders that make sound judgments. These leaders train Soldiers to be better as a result. Therefore, lifelong learning creates better leaders that contribute more to the Army.

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In conclusion, hands-on training, ownership of learning and critical thinking, and building better leaders make up the Army’s lifelong learning training. The 21st-century training program makes better Soldiers that are more prepared to carry out any task. Soldiers and leaders like this program more than the previous system of endless lectures. Information starts at the AIT level and never stops growing in this system. Soldiers prepare better to carry out any task related to their respective job or tasks needed to accomplish a mission. Lifelong learning sets the bar for the Army to rise above as new Soldiers and leaders come every day. “Indeed, the ATLDP series of studies found lifelong learning a critical requirement for future development.” (Schwartzman 2003). The Army changes over time, but this learning style is required for today’s battle. The present and future of the Army is lifelong learning.  

Works Cited

  1. Schwartzman, R. (2003). Lifelong learning for the Army: The Future Army Training and Leader Development Panel (ATLDP) final report. United States Army War College.
  2. Wyche, W. L. (2013). Army lifelong learning: A look at self-directed, problem-centered training. Military Intelligence Professional Bulletin, 39(4), 70-75.
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Cite this Essay

Lifelong Learning in the Army: Building Better Leaders. (2023, August 04). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 26, 2024, from
“Lifelong Learning in the Army: Building Better Leaders.” GradesFixer, 04 Aug. 2023,
Lifelong Learning in the Army: Building Better Leaders. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 26 May 2024].
Lifelong Learning in the Army: Building Better Leaders [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2023 Aug 04 [cited 2024 May 26]. Available from:
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