Explainer-side versus learner-side optimization
Consider two kinds of meaning of the phrase "optimizing learning":
- You are an explainer and you want to construct some sort of idealized box, such that if you shove in learners into this box, they come out the other end having mastered (good retention, good transfer of learning, etc.) the learning material.
- You are a learner born into a world with horrible explanations. How do you fend for yourself in this cruel world, by seeking the good explanations, customizing your studying style to match your learning style, and integrating the best research on learning into your study habits?
The former is called explainer-side optimization and the latter is called learner-side optimization (until I find better/more standard terminology).