Specifically, adult student persistence is effectively influenced by four pillars of support: (a) the extent to which students are able to manage positive and negative forces, (b) support from a school 's staff for students ' sense of self-efficacy, (c) established realistic and attainable educational goals, and (d) the opportunity to assess progress toward those established goals (Comings, Parrella, & Soricone, 1999). Also important to adult education completion is the nature of interactions among students and staff. In a study of 600 literacy and numeracy students in Scotland, Tett, and Maclachlan (2007) found that learners who networked with other students and who interacted with their teachers had a more robust learning experience and generally demonstrated more positive life changes. Kegan et al. (2001) connected learning content and skills with complex meaning systems that are conceptually grounded in the idea that adults develop their reality and beliefs over time through a socializing process that occurs in and outside the classroom. After studying the developmental changes in 41 learners at three adult learning centers over period of 9-14 months, they concluded that adult learners change in a variety of ways that allow them to consolidate and elaborate their skills, knowledge, perspectives, and beliefs. The positive effect of adult education on learners is established in the literature. Kegan et al.
In considering major factors that facilitate adult development and change, it is helpful to conceive of an overarching assumption about learning: it is best achieved through collaboration and dialogue with other professionals. This assumption holds that “adults have enough life experience to be in dialogue with any teacher, about any subject, and will learn new knowledge or attitudes or skills best in relation to that life experience” (Knowles, 1970, as cited in Vella, 1994 book, p. 3). This dialogue, in turn, must be characterized by a mutual recognition of the psychological and sociocultural aspects of learning that affect individuals. Bee (Bee, 1996, as cited by Baumgartner & Merriam, 2000) suggests that these aspects include the psychological components of intelligence and personality, as well as the sociocultural components of race, ethnicity, gender, social class, and education.
Adult learners need to be able to identify with their environment as they approach the learning process; subsequently, they will be able to apply new concepts and/or old concepts to situations in the class setting. Adult learners can make sense of new concepts
An additional perspective was proposed by Davenport as he believed the two terms need not be mutually exclusive as both have value but needed to be tested empirically for validity and conceptual clarification (Holmes & Abington-Cooper, 2000). “The literal and original definition of pedagogy and andragogy also can allow for both teacher-centered and learner-centered activities. Both the child leader and the adult leader may be at different times directive and nondirective, authoritative and facilitative, etc. (Davenport, 1987)” (Holmes & Abington-Cooper, 2000, para. 30). Rachal was also in agreement with Davenport that the two approaches are not mutually exclusive, in addition, also not dichotomous (Holmes & Abington-Cooper, 2000).
Author and educator Dr. Jane Vella (1994) suggests twelve basic, deeply interconnected principals of adult learning that can be applied to all college students and other adult learners (Merriam, 1997). Vella (1994) suggested twelve basic, deeply interconnected principals of adult learning that can be applied across all cultures. The principles are based upon one basic assumption—adult learning is best achieved in dialogue. Adults have enough life experience to be in dialogue with any teacher, about any subject, and will learn new knowledge, attitudes, or skills best in relation to their life experiences. In a dialogue approach to adult learning, the teacher learns and the learner teaches. Therefore, the twelve principles are ways to begin,
The adult learner is someone who wants to know specific information for a purpose. How a person learns to get to where they want to be comes in a variety of ways. When one knows that something must be learned, he or she has to step back and evaluate the situation and ask themselves, “Why do I want to learn, and what steps
Merriam,. Caffarella, & Baumgartner introduces a roadmap for pedagogical effectiveness in a similar form to Brookfield’s. Though the two texts are different, they mainly aim at proving methods through which teachers can enhance their effectiveness as they seek to impart knowledge to their students. Merriam, Caffarella, and Baumgartner (2007) seek to describe available methods of instruction with regard to adult learning. In this regard, they provide what they consider to be the most ideal framework for adult learning thereby giving teachers tool with which they can achieve effectiveness. For instance, they discuss various learning paradigms applicable to adult learning, including Malcolm Knowles’s classic andragogical model (p. 83) among others, which falls in line with Brookfield’s fourth lens of consulting available pedagogical theoretical frameworks.
Learning is an essential part of everyone’s lives, regardless of age. Adults learn much differently than children and teenagers. There are many ways to learn but for the two people that I spoke with there were a few ways that were more prominent.
First, learning approaches for an adult education is different from childhood education learning approaches. As an adult, the approach is more practical. Adults have different needs as students, and these needs should be taken into thought when planning training for adults. Adult mindset is set and ready to be trained. It doesn’t take a lot of work to prepare adults to learn. Their mindset is no longer as it was during childhood; where it is not focused and ready to learn, but to play. Then the teacher has to incorporate many activities to help bring their wandering minds into the training world.
With more adult learners returning to school, it is important to recognize the differences in the learning styles of traditional learners and adult learners. If educators understand the differences, they will be able to help the adult learners succeed. The adult learning theory can be applied to the workplace, and educators should be able to apply it to better serve the adult learner. This paper explores the differences in the learning styles of the traditional learner and the adult learner and explains how the adult learning theory is utilized in the workplace.
University of Maryland University College has the mission of “improving the lives of adult learners” (UMUC, 2016). In the Undergraduate School, the writing program
“The resource of highest value in adult education is the learner’s experience (Dewey, 1961).” I believe this statement by Dewey to completely true and of the utmost important for learners of any age. Experience is what drives a person to
Adult learning is often looked upon as being a separate entity in the education system, an educational process that has little to do with prior experiences and makes little connection to the learning that has taken place in childhood and adolescence, when it fact it is though those experiences that have shaped and molded the adult into the adult that they become (Brookfield and Tuinjman, 1995). Andragogy, which is defined as "the science of helping adults learn," has taken on a broader meaning and included not only curriculum based education, but also experience and learner centered education (Titmus 1981). Today, we know different. There is a plethora of research devoted to
“Learners who enroll in noncredit programs typically fall into a variety of categories, including the general public, alumni, members of speciﬁc professions, and employees of businesses or government agencies that contract with continued education programs to provide training” (Baker,2013). There are many kinds of adult learners who are wanting to continue their education and their living longer lives. There is not an age limit either most adults go farther their education when they are ready. When learning is for personal gain and grades are not factors a question formulates, “What are other ways instructors can motivate adult learners?” In the article “Motivating factors for adult learners in higher education” it discusses an understanding of what influences motivated adult learners. The motivational influences are quality of instruction, quality of curriculum, relevance and pragmatism, interactive teaching space and effective management practices, progressive assessment and timely feedback, self-directedness, conducive learning environment, and effective academic advising practices” (Agboola,2015). These are important factors because of how they help adult learners want to understand, find the purpose, and be active within the program