People learn because they need to solve everyday problems. They solve problems by displaying four basic behaviours. Each of these behaviours arises from a specific learning orientation. These four behaviours and their associated learning orientations form the Learning Cycle. The Learning Cycle forms the basis of action learning, which underlies all of the MHA Guides and processes.
Each learning orientation in the Learning Cycle leads to the next, thus creating a circular dynamic. However, when operating, the cycle is actually a spiral that loops through taking action and reflecting on the action taken. The spiral nature of learning means that, as we learn and create new knowledge, we also create new and novel ways of thinking, knowing, and learning. Thus, the cycle of learning is never the same. Like a great wheel, every rotation puts us in a different place, with new knowledge and new learning.
There are four learning orientations, and each one has specific characteristics that define it. Each person has a combination of learning orientations that is described as a learning style profile, in which each of the four orientations is exhibited to some degree. When people understand their learning styles, and that of others, they begin to understand why people behave and operate in certain ways.