Adult Learning Theories and Practices

Your answer will include andragogy as well as self-directed, transformative, problem-based, and experiential learning. In addition, you will investigate how experiential learning can lead to positive change in an adult learning program.

 

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Instructions

This question has two components. Organize your paper using the following as section headings.

Analysis

· Compare and contrast adult learning theories and practices.

. These include andragogy, self-directed, transformative, problem-based, and experiential learning.

· Describe how you understand neuroplasticity as it relates to andragogy, self-directed, transformative, problem-based, and experiential learning.

· Describe the use of discussion in self-directed, transformative, problem-based, and experiential learning.

. Consider how discussion, as presented by Brookfield, functions within each of the adult learning theories.

· Evaluate the use of adult learning theories and practices in varied adult learning environments.

. Describe the advantages, disadvantages, and best practices of the adult learning instructional approaches listed.

. Describe the formal, informal, and nonformal learning environments in which adult learning takes place.

Application

· Apply the principles of experiential learning to change an adult learning activity.

. Think of a course you are teaching. How could you incorporate experiential learning into one of the units? (Remember that problem-based learning is a specific form of experiential learning.)

. Describe the unit and which part you would replace with an experiential learning activity, and then describe the experiential component and how you would envision it working. If you are not teaching, imagine a course that you have taken in the past.

· Describe the effects you would expect the incorporation of experiential learning to have on neuroplastic development in your learners.

 

 

Resources

Self-Directed Learning

· Merriam, S. B., & Bierema, L. L. (2014).  Adult learning: Linking theory and practice . Jossey-Bass.

. Chapter 4, “Fostering Self-Directed Learning,” pages 61–81.

. Chapter 4 is an exploration of Allen Tough’s theory of self-directed learning. While a seemingly common-sense theory, Tough was the first to analyze the actual process that adults engage in when learning on their own. This information is valuable in maximizing opportunities for adults to self-engage when they might otherwise hesitate to do so.

 

Experiential Learning

· Merriam, S. B., & Bierema, L. L. (2014).  Adult learning: Linking theory and practice . Jossey-Bass.

. Chapter 6, “Teaching About Power,” pages 104–126.

. This chapter includes a discussion of experiential learning, arguably the oldest theory in education as a whole. The apprenticeship model is an example of experiential learning, as is the clinical rotation in medicine, nursing, and allied health, and the internship in other professional areas.

Transformative Learning

· Merriam, S. B., & Bierema, L. L. (2014).  Adult learning: Linking theory and practice . Jossey-Bass.

. Chapter 5, “Democratizing the Classroom,” pages 82–103.

. Transformative learning is sometimes incorrectly referred to as “transformational learning.” Transformative learning is based on the seminal work of Jack Mezirow, who originally proposed the term to represent an exploration of the learning experience that leads to a dramatic shift in the learner’s perspective on an important issue. Transformative learning, as you will see, is a theory greatly debated in contemporary adult education.

Designing Discussions

· Brookfield, S. D. (2013).  Powerful techniques for teaching adults . Jossey-Bass.

. Chapter 3, “Using Discussion Methods,” pages 63–88.

. When planned carefully, discussions can make any learning environment more effective, reinforcing the concepts, theories, and applications of any learning module. Unlike guided discussions, the situations that arise in planned discussions are truly the students’ own. You will consider this topic as part of the assignment due this week.

 

Additional Requirements

· References: Support your assertions with references to current, scholarly resources. (resources above)

· Written communication: Written communication is free of errors that detract from the overall message.

· APA formatting: Resources and citations are formatted according to current APA style

· Length: 7–9 typed, double-spaced pages, including cover and reference pages.

· Font and font size: Times New Roman, 12 point.

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