There are different theories about the transfer of learning; these are the Mental Discipline Theory, Apperception Theory, the Identical Elements Theory, Generalization Theory and the Gestalt Theory of transfer.
The theory of Mental Discipline tells that education is a matter of training in the mind or disciplining the mind. These trainings or disciplines are the vigorous mental exercises in the field of classics, in the field of logic, in the field of grammar, science and mathematics. The theory assumes that those training can make an individual effective in all area where a given faculty is employed.
The theory of Apperception states thatthe transfer of learning is done by becoming consciously aware of a particular idea and assimilates this idea with the other which was already acquired. It is a process of relating new ideas to the older ideas that was already acquired.
The theory of Identical Elements states that the transfer of learning is facilitated in the second situation into the extent that it contains identical elements or factors which occurred in the learning situation earlier. These identical elements may be in the form of procedures, of concepts, of actions, of facts, of attitudes, of principles, of techniques as well as of others.
The theory of generalization is another way of relating experience in whichwhat is gained at a certain point will redound to the advantage of the individual in the many spheres of his or her thought as well as in his or her actions. This theory was advocated by Charles Judd; according to him there are two levels or two kinds of knowledge-wrote learning or memorization without any meaning or generalized knowledge but with many intellectual associations. The generalization will show into action in the times that the environment will give way to its occurrence.
The Gestalt theory of transfer states that the transfer of learning can be best achieve when an individual is in the very best of the frame of mind; in the times that he or she is aware of the meanings of a particular situation or experiences and to their practical application to one’s daily life. The believers of this theory further views that whenever the transfer of learning occurs, this will be in the form of generalization, in the form of concepts or in the form of insights; and these could be developed into a single learning situation as well as it is employed in the other situations.