I initially wanted to create a post to discuss what just-in-time learning is (inspired in part by a colleague’s post here) and how it can be applied to coaching and ongoing personal and professional, and sometimes learning opportunities find us in the most unexpected of places.

See, I planned to show a definition of this via Wikipedia and then provide some suggestions for how to promote this, though found myself scratching my head when I discovered there was not an article on this!

This turned into an exercise in just-in-time learning in practice, as I then put the post and suggestions on hold to write the article itself. It is right here if you want to see it (and edit or improve it on your own, as well, as it is Wikipedia and is intended as a group effort!).

This is how I defined just-in-time learning (based on the credible literature, of course):

Just-in-time learning is an approach to individual or organizational learning and development that promotes need-related training be readily available exactly when and how it is needed by the learner.

In this way, I did not only need to discuss this in my intended post, but I took my immediate need, namely to point to a Wikipedia article, and transitioned that to the creation of the article itself, which I am now reporting here. I learned how to meet my need for pointing to this article exactly when I had it, so rather than just shake my head and walk away unfulfilled, I was able to learn the evidence in order to support the claims in the article, and then write it, exactly when I needed it.

The result is I know an article can be written quickly AND I can now share that learning, in real time, with others. This did not happen as a result of a course or scheduled event, but rather I met the need with the skills I had exactly when the time required I do so.

I will continue to process this experience this week, as there is still a lot to unpack here.


  1. Misa

    You took it one step further even – the best way to learn is to teach.

    • Jeffrey Keefer

      Thanks for that feedback Misa. Indeed, a lot to unpack here . . .

  2. Bere

    Really impressed that you created a Wikipedia article about this! Great job, Jeffrey!

  3. Michelle Seidling

    Nice job on the article, Jeffrey! Just-in-time learning happens more often than you realize. It’s important to recognize it for what it is, and take advantage of it in our work, family, and community.

    • Jeffrey Keefer

      I agree, Michelle. I think that while it happens often, as you say we so frequently miss it. Valuable for those who engage in education and coaching to be attentive to these signs.

  4. Prakhar

    Great post! Thanks for the mention, Jeffrey! 😀

  5. Karine Galland

    Very interresting Jeffrey! Thanks for that and for the wiki!

    • Jeffrey Keefer

      I appreciate your feedback and encouragement; thanks!!


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About Me

Jeffrey M. Keefer, Ph.D., is an educational consultant, institutional researcher and accreditation officer in higher education, professor of research methodology, nonprofit capacity building and strategic planning consultant, talent development coach, spiritual life advisor (chaplain) at New York University, spiritual director, and Wikipedian.