Inft Adult Learning Theory

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Adult Learning Theory

Dustin Stamey

Adult Learning Theory Summary

Non Traditional college students make up a large percent of the total population. There are a few categories that they fall into. The first category is workers. Non-traditional students might have either lost their job or are doing training to move up the ladder from their current position. The second category is military veterans. After years in the service, their professional education took a back seat. All they know is military service. For them, it will be really hard to acclimate into civilian life. The third category is adults that just received their GED and are now pursuing a life in higher education.

It is important to provide for the adult learners so that they can thrive. M.S. Knowles said that there are four principles that characterize adult learners.

“1. They are self directed, take responsibility for their own actions, and resist having information arbitrarily imposed on them.
2. They have an extensive depth of experience, which serves as a critical component in the foundation of their self identity.
3. They are ready to learn. As most adult learners return to college voluntarily, they are likely to actively engage in the learning process.
4. They are task motivated. Adult students returning to college attend for a specific goal and the primary component of their motivational drive tends to be internal” (Knowles, 1984)

According to Schraw and Moshman there are three “Metacognitive Frameworks” that help people build their own learning theories. These would include Tacit, Informal, and Formal. Some of the metacognitive skills are built over time, such is the case with tacit and informal theory. These are made from educators and very repetitive jobs that do not require critical thinking. One of the biggest problems with adult learners is their gap in education.

The adult has learned practical education instead of learning...
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