Have you ever wondered what it truly means to be an expert at something? Learning is the first step to becoming an expert. A full 95 percent of people have the capacity to learn and acquire knowledge in any field of study. You need to really understand how you learn, because everyone is different.
There’s the sensitive versus intuitive learning. For the sensitive learners, there’s a focus on physical reality, sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell. Intuitive learners comprehend symbols and metaphors. Then there’s the visual and verbal learners. Visual learners prefer absorbing information presented through diagrams, flowcharts, and organization through color. Verbal learners would much rather listen to a lecture and take notes. There are active and reflective learners as well. The active types are hands-on and adventuresome while reflective learners are more thoughtful and logical. Sequential and global learners are on very different ends of the learning spectrum. Sequential learners are comfortable with ordered progression of steps increasing in difficulty until the whole is understood. Global learners aren’t comfortable with material until the entire big picture clicks into understanding.
The 10,000 Hour Rule Theory states that expertise takes 10,000 hours of focus and practice on a given topic, which equates roughly to 20 hours/week for 10 full years. Basic competency alone takes practice and time. The brain needs about eight weeks to build neural pathways for new skills. But remember, experience alone does not equate to expertise.
Knowledge wise, you’re an expert when you can form a judgment of ideas and methods using external evidence and self-selected criteria from informed rationalizations. As far as skills go, you’ll be able to create new tasks, incorporating learned ones.
To learn more details about what it really takes to become an expert, take a look at the full infographic by Zintro.