March 25, 2010
Psychological Foundations of Adult Learning
Adult education according to Denton (1993) includes all experiences of mature men and women in which new skills, knowledge, values and interest are enhanced combining the various process of social change, culture, production, politics and service. Defining adult education as a single concept is difficult. I think of adult education more or less in terms of the American dream; one is motivated by the concept of equality and the hope of a better life. Malcolm Knowles wrote about adult education in the United States however; adult education can be traced back to Socrates, Aristotle, Plato and Jesus Christ- they were all teachers of mature adult learners.
Adult learning has been define as “self-directed” learning suggested by Knowles as a theme that most adults have “a preference “for being directed instead of teacher directed. Self-directed learning brings to mind a type of formal classroom setting. From my past experiences education also takes place in non-educational settings such as the workplace or social orgazitaions. I agree somewhat with Dewey’s assumption that adults have some immediate problem to solve therefore they will seek out education as a means to solve a current or future problem. One of the reasons I am back in school is to solve the current problem. By returning to school, and understanding the changelings of working toward a master degree. I am reasonably self-directed and have enjoyed most of my classes.
The focus of the andragogical learning environment that adults are different, requiring a different learning environment from the pedagogical approach used with children. Most adults are self-directed having a reservoir of life experiences to bring to the learning environment. I have also been in learning environments where adults had not been out of the city were...
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