Learning Theories Essential Insights

Boost your knowledge of learning theories and develop your skills as an L&D practitioner


60-90 minutes

Online self-directed

Essential Insights


Free for CIPD members and Core Learning Subscribers.

CIPD research indicates that knowledge of adult learning theories amongst L&D practitioners is low. This has meant that there has been missed opportunities in the design and delivery of learning interventions.

This evidence-based course offers a starting point for practitioners to explore the facts relating to how people learn. It investigates and compares different learning theories and provides an overview of how this applies to the design and delivery of learning interventions.

Learners will explore some of the main concepts and philosophical approaches to learning. It also demonstrates how the CIPD created their learning philosophy.

Designed by leading L&D professional Fiona McBride, it will share a wealth of evidence and showcase the best of online design in learning.

All CIPD Learning courses will automatically provide you with access to the CIPD Learning Hub, our online learning platform, for 24 months.

The hub will house your course content, as well as useful resources, tools, and a community of professionals that you can tap into to support your learning and continual development.

CIPD Members

You already have access to the features and benefits of the Core Learning Subscription, which includes this course, as part of your membership, access it here.


In this course, you will:

  • describe why having an up-to-date knowledge of learning and motivational theory is important for L&D practitioners
  • explore CIPD’s philosophical approach to learning
  • compare different ‘approaches’ of learning theory and how it applies to design and delivery of learning
  • describe key motivational theories that apply to L&D practitioners.

Is this course right for me?

Do you have a passion for learning? This course is a must for anyone who is involved in workplace learning, development, and training, including HR practitioners, L&D teams, trainers, and line managers.

Core learning subscription

I want to put my team on this course

Learning outcomes

Course structure