Last updated: Sat, 6 Sep 2008 11:43:26
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[cw4303-vkkdebunk.jpg] Vekkie with Kwali and Kumbi in DeBunk
Kumbi, you look a bit bedraggled down there in DeBunk. Are you all wet?
Yes, Kwali. I'm all wet. Physically. Not mentally!
Hey, are you okay, Kumbi?
Oh, yes, Vekkie; I'm just fine - just a bit wet; that's all,
How did you get wet, Kumbi?
It's like this, Kwali. I fell in the Perimeter Ditch. Same as you did later!
Oh. Well, yeah; that would get you all wet, all right.
Yes. If you roll in water, you are quite likely to get wet, even if you didn't roll in the water on purpose.
That's right, Doctor Vekkie. Hey, Vekkie! Since when did you become a Doctor?
I'm not a Doctor. This is just trappings.
Oh, hey, Vekkie, trappings, as in traps, you mean?
That's right, Kwali. As in trappings. You know, dressing-up. Make-believe. Guru-imitation kind of stuff.
Haha! Guru-Imitation! I love it! I've seen quite a few of those around. I read a lot on the Web, you know, when I'm reducing my surface tension. Use your browser's Back button to come back here if you go there.
Me too, Kumbi. I love reading that stuff. Even when some is good stuff, there's often more than a little tinge of Guru-ism going on.
Why, so there is, Kwali.
Yes indeedy. Which is why I'm carrying this SALT. I need a grain of salt to cope with web sites about diabetes in dogs.
Seems a good idea to me. But that looks like more than a grain of salt you're carrying.
True. It's even more than the Tablespoon of Salt one needs for some stuff on the web or on some email lists. I carry it high this way for another reason, too. If I tell too many tall tails (notice how tall my tail is here), the Salt is likely to fall on my head, as I forget what I'm doing. With diabetes, one must not be too long absent-minded.
Good idea, Vekkie. If you get absent-minded, I hope I'm out of the path of your falling Salt.
Kwali, I think you are out of its path, even though you're in De-Upper-Bunk. You're much too Far Out for falling Salt to reach you. to the side - too far out? - to get hit by falling Salt. I'm even more out of its path, here in DeLowerBunk. I'm too far to the side, too.
Copyright © 2006, by Dr. Kate Fulkerson.
Used with permission.
Dr, Kate Fulkerson is a clinical psychologist who teaches and practices at Duke University in North Carolina. She posted this article to the DogRead Yahoo Group, following a discussion of expertise, when Turid Rugaas was a guest there, in July, 2006.
Posted Saturday, 22 July 2006 11:22:24 EDT
["Turid" is Turid Rugaas, dog-training and behavior expert.]
Slightly edited for the web
From message # 53287 on DogRead
I am intrigued by Turid's statements that "there are no experts" and the idea that she has focussed on learning. In this vein, the current issue of Scientific American has an interesting lead article about experts. At first blush this article may seem to contradict Turid, but I think they are merely using different language to express some of the same concepts.
Much study has been done in psychology to determine how expertise is acquired in a field. Academic titles and even years and diversity of experience do not necessarily predict the highest level of expertise, which psychologists usually call "expert performance." Mere talent is also not sufficient to predict expert performance. Child prodigies have a poor record of expert performance as adults.
Neil Charness and Anders Ericsson are two of the leading researchers in the area of expert performance. They have particularly studied experts in chess, athletics, music, and mathematics.
The results of their study are quite interesting. They conclude that talent has been over-valued by most people. Likewise merely doing an activity for a length of time is not sufficient. As one of my old professors used to say, "It's not how many you have done; it's how many you have done right."
"Effortful study" is the primary predictor of expert performance. On average people who achieve expert performance study their craft about five hours a day every day for ten years. They don't just do a craft; they assess and study and try to improve during each of these hours of "effortful study." Experts never consider themselves "finished" in study.
Many experts have excellent memories and use their memories as a sort of "scratch pad" for trying and evaluating approaches. But they also use the standard methods of notekeeping and mentor supervision of their work. When the researchers coined the term "effortful study," they truly meant study that took a lot of work. These experts are constantly researching their own techniques in order to improve performance. Even so, ten years of effortful study is required to truly master and excel in a field of expertise. TEN years, no shortcuts, of very hard work on a daily basis.
I actually think that Turid qualifies as being able to do "expert performance." I think her emphasis on learning and her consistent attempts to improve her own performance by research and by practice make her a good example of how to attain expertise.
I think there are many other trainers who are good at what they do, and there are people who have natural talent. But exceedingly few people are willing to do the kind of "effortful study" that is required for expert performance.
From a psychological research standpoint, continuing to learn and to study hard is synonymous with expertise. Turid never thinks that she is finished learning and improving.
I think that there are many people who fall victim to "guru status" and come to believe that they are more expert than their Effortful Study warrants. Many of these people write books and do workshops and have television shows and become quite popular. Some of them may even have talent. But most of them have stopped "Effortful Study" long before they reached the level of "expert performance." And these are the kinds of "experts" that I think Turid means when she says that there are no experts.
I think there are very, very few experts and many wannabes who no longer think it necessary to learn and to effortfully study.
Oh, Kate; that is very well-said. Thank you.
Yes, Vekkie, I agree with you. Did you know that Turid visited us one time? She watched us, in the most friendly way - not staring, just taking us in. She was laughing. We were laughing.
Oh, Kwali, I remember that! Who could ever forget! And yes. I agree with Kate. Turid is an expert, all right. She is an expert observer. Very meticulous. Very accurate! She gets it right. She communicates with us, in OUR language.
That's right, Kumbi, she really does. And Mum says, she's watched Turid at work. Yes; Turid works every single day. She never stops. And she never stops trying to improve her own work.
I really like to hear that. I like to know who I can talk to, straight. No fooling around.
You're kidding, Vekkie! You're always fooling around!
Oh, yes; but that is playing! Kwali, you and Kumbi also know how to play, and you do! Don't you!
Right on, Vekkie. We do play. But you take the cake. That doctor outfit, for instance! What fun! You look like a real veterinarian!
Well, I think maybe I was one in a past life. But I do need to carry this container of a lot of grains - or tablespoons - of Salt, to remind myself not to get too caught up in my own Guru-status.
What if it's not Salt?
Kumbi, you're about to ramble.
So I am, Kwali. We can do that in our Ramble-Forest, and people who don't want to join our ramble can continue right away here.
Good idea, Kumbi. So, Kate, Do tell us your Camellia Story.
Copyright © 2006 by Dr.Kate Fulkerson
Used with permission.
From Message # 53612
Slightly edited for the web.
Posted on Monday, 31 July 2006 17:21:28 -0000
Of course, you are talking to the person whose camellia wasn't moved to the right place because she doesn't speak Spanish as well as she thought she did [grin]. But I sure keep trying to speak Spanish so I'll take a stab at your question. Remember that this may truly be a stab in the dark by someone whose camellia will probably never forgive her because it's planted in bright sunlight [sigh].
When I am trying to understand what a dog is saying, I look at the reaction of the other dog. I know that other dogs speak better dog language than I do. I assume that your dog knew exactly what she was saying. And so did the other dog. I guess what I am saying is to let the outcome guide your interpretation.
Even so, I would be very cautious about making any interpretation based on only one example of the behavior. Turid and her colleagues watched lots of dogs before arriving at her conclusions. I've seen lots of "experts" make interpretations based on far less than Turid has done
Beware of those people; their camellias are not in the right place [grin].
I say, Kate; that is a wonderful story about Camellias.
Don't be silly, Kwali. The story isn't about Camellias at all.
Oh, I know that, Kumbi! But I love to think of it as a story about Camellias. After all, its the Camellias who get the short end of the deal!
Oh my goodness, Kwali! You ARE a sage! You're so right! So in some ways, it IS a story about Camellias! Poor Camellias
Oh, I can help with that. Step aside; I'm a veterinarian, and I'll fix up the poor Camellias.
Now who's being silly? Vekkie, veterinarians don't fix Camellias, do they? Well, some might!
I don't care who they are, animal, vegetable or mineral; I'll certainly try to fix things if someBodyBrain is unhappy or not feeling well.
Vekkie, you really are so sweet. So could you go fix those Camellias for Kate?
Well, I'd certainly do it for Kate, but even more, I'd do it for the Camellias.
I have the last word here, I expect. Vekkie, you would do anything for anyBodyBeing, if you possibly could,
No, I have the last word. Yes; I would. But, then so would you, Kumbi. and so would you, Kwali!
So would we all.
P.S. I got the last word,