ALV Path of Learning

A Learners’ View (ALV) Is Of Choices On The Shortest And Fastest Path To Learning, The Oxygen Of Social Life.

ALV (a Learners’ View) of learning captures, isolates, and gives focus to choices people make as the oxygen of social life.

Main Article: ALV (A Learners’ View) of Teaching and Learning in One Lesson


the journeyFROM A LEARNERS’ VIEW (ALV), THE ALV PATH distinguishes learning as social processes. Learning, from this view, consists of adopting and adapting vocabulary such as sounds and other sensations, images, symbols, as well as gestures, relationships among vocabulary, and arranging them to demonstrate that learning has occurred. This path is to learning as the genetic code is to human reproduction. Both represent ways people account for these aspects of their life within and across generations.

The heart of the ALV Path features ways to match lessons with likely choices learners will make while learning vocabulary during those lessons. Matching occurs by using active ingredients of learning in ways organized by principles of learning. Changes in use of vocabulary indicate how much learning has occurred. 

This path consists of a series of observable choices learners will likely make while learning. This path provides a map of choices that form an infrastructure for learning content (vocabulary) of lessons as an electric grid powers a  light bulb.

ALV Path

This path consists of 15 choice points across five set of options. Learning occurs while people make these choices. Learning occurs:

  1. In one step (other observable activity is trial-and-errors);
  2. By choosing one of two options (correct or incorrect);
  3. In each of three stages (before, during, and after learning);
  4. At four levels as called orders (First Order – Sensations; Second Order – Problem Solving; Third Order – Normalization; and Fourth Order – Valuation) of learning;
  5. To solve one or more of five generic problems that make up each lesson (answers to these questions: What is it? What is like it? What is it not and not like it? What comes next? and What is missing?).

Choice Points

From a learners’ view, life consists of an unending series of choosing from among alternative actions, for example, whether to stand up or continue sitting, whether to wear a blue or a pink shirt. Learners use …

Options at Choice Points

Alternative choices are sensation based…. One option is to pay attention to one sensation over others, such as vision over sound.


Attention serves three uses in learning as a social process. First, people choose to pay attention to something. That choice starts learning by identifying alternative actions from which to choose one most likely to solve a problem. That is, attention is the beginning of the process of distinguishing which details of activities to watch, listen to, etc. in order to solve a problem (to answer one of the five generic questions learning answers). Second, people choose the sensations in the problem to which they will attend. Third, they choose the level of the situation in order to solve that problem.

Problems to Solve

People choose problems they will solve and how they will solve them…


Scientists who address the B.F. Skinner stimulus-response theory argue that consequences (contingencies) would form a sixth set of choices. Contingencies (rewards, punishments, etc.) for these choices result in increasing or decreasing the likelihood of a learner repeating one or more choices on the ALV Path. Those who study the two choice visual discrimination research data of David Zeaman and Betty House argue that contingencies are unnecessary for learning to occur and to sustain that which is learned. At the same time, a team of sociologists headed by Bernard Farber demonstrated that family life serves as a predictor of learning occurring, irrespective of the way lessons address choices of learners. These three research programs and their off-spring used experimental designs.

Such research reports illustrate that the ALV Path may appear too simplistic. That’s a fair observation.

From a learners view, here’s the observation that matters, at least for now. Whenever someone learns something, they learn it from a lesson that matches choices on the ALV path to learning. The more accurate and precise the lesson, the fewer trial-and-errors and less clock time it takes learners to learn that lesson.


  1. Active Ingredient of Learning (AIL)
  2. ALV as Social Processes
  3. Baum, L.F. (1900). The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Chicago, IL: George M. Hill Company.
  4. Farber, B. (1971). Kinship and Class: A Midwestern Study. NY: Basic Books.
  5. Learning as Making Choices
  6. Skinners, B.F. (1938). The Behavior of Organisms: An Experimental Analysis. NY: Appleton-Century-Crofts.
  7. Vocabulary
  8. Zeaman, D. & House, B. (1963). Two-Choice Visual Discrimination Analysis. In N. Ellis (Ed.), Handbook of Mental Deficiency. Psychological Theory and Research. NY: McGraw Hill.

Related Reading

  1. Categories of Choices Learners Use to Learn
  2. Checklists to Use ALV Path
  3. Choices Frame an Infrastructure of Learning
  4. Code for Learning
  5. Irreverence and Doctrinal Competition
  6. Learning as Solving Five Generic Problems

Last Edited: August 16, 2015