Adult Learning Theory
Donna L. Herrera
June 20, 2013
Research has been prepared over the past twenty years to help educators comprehend Adult Learning, and observe different theories to help facilitate returning adult students. Some of the different issues that were investigated were the mental, physical and emotional aspects of Adult Learning. This is not only imperative for educators. It is vital for Adult Learners so that they are able to ascertain the content of the subject area and retain the knowledge being taught. In these two articles are certain ways that educators are learning to assist adults who choose to return to college and receive a degree. Anxiety and the Newly Returned Adult Student is an article written by Michele Cleary (2012) that focuses on the response of two adult students who have returned to college and the different ways they faced the challenges of writing essays. Adult students seem to have a higher level of anxiety when attempting to write than younger students. Research has found that when adults gain confidence they can overcome this anxiety and are able to write. Many different strategies were discussed to support adult students, but receiving writing instructions that respond to the adult student’s individual needs seems to be the most effective. Adult Learning Theory for the Twenty-First Century (Merriam, Sharan B., 2008) states that educators are continuing to theorize the different dimensions of the Adult Learner. Research has found that adult learning is multidimensional. Learning activities which aid to promote “the mind, body, spirit, emotions, and society are not themselves simply sites of learning; learning occurs in their intersections with each other.” (Merriam, 2008, p.97). Although the first article focuses on writing assignments and the second article focuses on adult learning as a whole, both articles come to the same conclusions. Adult Learners benefit from...
References: Cleary, Michelle (May 2012). Teaching English in the Two Year College. Anxiety and the Newly Returned Adult Student, 346-376.
Merriam, Sharan B. (2008). New Directions for Adult and Continue Education, no 119. Adult Learning Theory for the Twenty-First Century, 93-98
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