We Must Train and Educate Within an Uncertain Environment to Prepare to Adapt

Police officers standing guard November 10th

The Science of Learning has evolved to a point where the distinction between training and education is no longer useful. On the street, training prepares police to deal with expected situations. Education prepares a police officer to deal with uncertainty. On the street they all know that they will have to be capable of performing specific tasks and following their mission in order to survive. However, they will also be expected to demonstrate resourcefulness, initiative, creativity, and inventiveness demanded by a situation on which confronting the unexpected and new is considered to be routine. Training for adaptive challenges we must develop these skills as well as those associated with traditional tactical tasks. We describe the confluence of training and education as learning packaged into two categories:

...training as street learning and education as institutional learning. In addition, learning to adapt to adaptive challenges requires that individuals and units have the ability to develop new knowledge, skills, and abilities that are necessary for success but for which they have neither been trained nor educated.

Conventional wisdom suggests that we “train for the known and educate for the unknown.” This division is no longer adequate. We must train and educate within an uncertain environment to prepare to adapt.

Stay Oriented!