I recently attended a conference session focused on The Decision to Learn, a book published by ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership. The author researched and analyzed why people seek continuing education and how membership organizations can meet learners’ needs. I was excited to learn the Ohio Society of CPAs was one of the organizations that participated in the research. I immediately returned to the office to get permission to purchase the book to dig a little deeper. I was curious to know if the 2008 SCACPA research conducted by Kerr & Downs matched the findings in the book.
Highlights from the decision to learn study were:
- Access to professional education programs is an important benefit of membership.
- Association learners strongly prefer in-person programs but will participate in distance learning.
- Sense of affiliation with an association is the strongest predictor of attendance in association learning programs.
- The youngest members have different motivations to learn.
- Respondents want to learn from practitioners.
The challenge for me after hearing the session and quickly skimming the book is, “How does SCACPA meet the needs of its members when the preference for learning varies from the traditional live in-person programs to the technology driven formats online? Is the answer a mix of all methods of learning to offer members the opportunity to get the best out of their learning experience by combining varying methods of learning?”
I would love your help in figuring this out. Please respond to the poll below and stay tuned for my next blog post as I continue reading The Decision to Learn and announce the results of our poll.
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Blogger: Reva Brennan, MPA, CAE, IOM, Associate Director, South Carolina Association of CPAs