Dotty Andragogy

The amusing musings of an adult educator in the corporate training world.

MythBusters – The Teacher’s Edition

on September 20, 2014

In my last post I shared with you the shattering moment when I realized that learning styles weren’t a real thing. Now, be prepared to have your minds blown again:

You know Mehrabian’s model of communication? 55% of our communication is conveyed through body language, 38% through voice tone, and only 7% through words? Guess what. Also not true. See the Mehrabian myth very aptly debunked in this video:

Rather than the model simply being “made up” or false, it seems we have misinterpreted the results of Mehrabian’s original experiment. Here is a detailed description of the original Mehrabian experiments that became the origin of these numbers:

And the educational myths don’t stop with Mehrabian. Every teacher has heard of Dale’s cone of experience: we remember 10% of what we see, 20% of what we hear, 50% of what we see and hear, 80% of what we do see, hear, and do, right? Wrong. According to this PhD’s research, the graph is a fraud. Even Edgar Dale is uncertain of where the numbers come from that are attributed to him.

On top of all this, a recent CBC breaking news story revealed that Hello Kitty is not a cat, she is actually a girl. I don’t even know what to believe anymore.


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