Understanding the Adult Learner

UNDERSTANDING THE ADULT LEARNER

In order to facilitate in an adult learning environment, instructors must understand how adults learn and apply the appropriate learning strategies/techniques that accommodate adult as  learners.  It is argued that adults differ from children in a number of ways and must be treated differently.   Adult learners bring very different sets of skills, knowledge and expectations to the classroom . Those differences can be tapped by instructors to make the learning environment more productive for the learners. Therefore it is important that facilitators of adult learners understand the principles of teaching adults and their implications for learning.

The Understanding and Facilitating Adult Learners course is for individuals with “Content Mastery” in various occupational areas and who are currently or aspirant training facilitators, community educators, supervisors and/or administrators. Such individuals typically perform a direct or supportive role in training adult learners, on a short-term or continuing professional development basis, to improve specific competencies

This Adult Learning Intervention is to enhance the development of facilitators’ competence in training adults. This training intervention is therefore designed to expose facilitators to a variety of adult teaching and learning principles. It will provide opportunities for participants to identify learner-centred methods and be able to utilize them in a practical manner.

The intervention will engage the facilitators in series of activities to support their professional development by providing hands on experiences in facilitating in an adult learning environment.

Training Intervention Objectives                     

As a result of participating in this intervention, participants should be better able to do the following :

  • Determine the purpose of the teaching-learning situation.
  • Determine their roles as facilitators in an adult learning environment.
  • Gain familiarity with key theoretical concepts consistent with adult learning theory (andragogy)
  • Demonstrate the application of adult learning principles and theories through group presentations and self analysis.
  • Outline key steps in the training session planning process.
  • Appreciate suggested best-practice strategies for effective training delivery.
  • Facilitate training interventions in accordance with best-practice guidelines
  • Appreciate the range of activities and interventions that support effective transfer of learning.  
  • Explore a variety of learning styles in order to facilitate effectively in an adult learning environment.
  • Explore different teaching-learning strategies to be utilized in an adult learning environment.

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