What is transfer of learning?
Transfer of learning occurs when a person acquires knowledge and then is able to transfer that knowledge or learning to a different and/or new situation (Allesi &Trollip 2001). There are both positive and negative transfers of learning that can occur, as well as a near transfer and far transfer that will be explained in further detail below. Transfer of learning is important in education because you want the information students are learning in the classroom to transfer to their real lives and possibly even from one subject to another subject. According to Allesi & Trollip 2001, technology is often used to teach a lesson with the aim that the knowledge acquired from that lesson will be applied in the real world. An example of this sort of use would be the use of a simulation program. The user would use the simulation program to practice the skill that they would need to know in a real world application. Allesi & Trollip 2001 uses the example of a flight simulation program that would teach a person learning to be a pilot how to use controls before applying those skills in an actual aircraft.

Two types of transfer:
There are two types of learning transfer that can occur. The is near transfer of learning and far transfer of learning. In near transfer of learning, the skills or knowledge learned originally are applied to a new situation that is similar to that original situation (Allesi &Trollip 2001). In a far transfer of learning, the learning is transferred to a situation that is very different from the original environment (Allesi &Trollip 2001).


Research Based Literature:
Being able to apply what you have learned previously, in a real life situation is a really important ability for a student to have (Huang, Huang, Wang, Hwang, 2009). According to Huang et al., 2009, this is especially true in web-based learning. This study by Huang et al., 2009, discusses how using a learning sequence recommendation system to promote the transfer of learning in a web-based learning environment. It was found that when using the learning sequence recommendation system, the transfer of learning was promoted (Huang et al., 2009).
A study by Butler, A. 2010, investigates whether or not test-enhanced learning promotes transfer of learning. The results of this study found that testing does increase the retention of information and states that the retention of information is a key part of the transfer process (Butler, A., 2010). Butler, A., 2010 recommended that in future research on the transfer of learning, researchers should focus on how testing can be used to increase the transfer of learning.


Alessi, Stephen M., & Trollip, Stanley R. (2001). Multimedia for learning methods and development. Needham Heights, MA: A Pearson Education Company.
Butler, Andrew C. (2010). Repeated testing produces superior transfer of learning relative to repeated studying. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 36(5), 1118-1133.
Huang, Y.-M., Huang, T.-C., Wang, K.-T., &Hwang, W.-Y. (2009) A markov-based recommendation model for exploring the transfer of learning on the web. Educational Technology and Society, 12(2), 144-162.

Created By: Shannon Ryan