What does it
take to learn CAD now days?
Are you smart enough to master CAD? What does it
take? Can it be done on your own? Do you need training?
Is it best to get it from books? Is a classroom setting
I have been learning CAD for almost 20 years and
training others in CAD for almost as long. I have seen a
lot of software come and go. I have investing in learning
tools that have disappeared over the years. I bet you have
done the same thing. Learned a new tool only to see it no
longer developed or embraced by the CAD community and it just
I don't know about you, but
time is precious to me and I can not afford to waste my time
when it comes to learning new tools. I want to focus my
efforts to get the maximum return on my investment of time.
So what is a person to do?
What is the best method for getting up to speed? Who can
you depend on for information? Who's job is it to teach
you and how hard do you have to work at mastering the newest,
best and brightest software tools?
We will take a look at this
subject over the next few months to see if we can come up with
some answers and processes to assist you in getting trained and
in training others.
I don't want to waste your
time - so here is my conclusion. I think it is your job to
learn CAD. Others will help you and assist, but it is
ultimately up to you to dig into the subject and invest in
yourself. So keep reading if you want to know more...
First a scientific look at
the subject of intelligence. They have categorized
intelligence into two broad categories. Fluid and
Fluid Intelligence is: “a natural ability which
is not dependant on acquired knowledge”
Crystallized Intelligence is: “ability dependent
on acquired knowledge”
Many studies have shown that fluid intelligence
is more likely to decline with age than crystallized
intelligence. In fact, crystallized intelligence may continue to
improve with age. Many people continue to gain expertise and
skills in particular areas throughout life.
Scientists like to compare these two kinds of
intelligences to a computer. Think of Fluid Intelligence as the
computer hardware (the processor, all the wires, and the other
hardware components) which is like the person's brain and
central nervous system. Now think of Crystallized Intelligence
as the computer software which is the person's strategies.
Finally think of the data stored inside the computer as an
individual's lifetime of accumulated knowledge.
So we have Fluid Intelligence:
- Ability to adjust one’s thinking to unfamiliar
- Measured through performance on tests that involve solving new
And we have Crystallized Intelligence:
- Results from education, experience and
- Measured with tests of verbal comprehension, vocabulary and
I think that learning CAD
requires both. Some folks have a little better edge on
Fluid Intelligence. They just figuring things out.
They seem to know what to click and how it all works together.
Others are Crystallizers. They seem to soak up all of the
data that is pumped in. They are a walking book of
Learning CAD needs both.
You need to be unafraid to experiment and you need to retain the
results that work. Don't be afraid of just trying things
out. Keep track of the processes that work. Learning
is tough, but if you stay focused - you will get it.
More next month...