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Elizabeth Mattison

CAE 213 Introduction to Adult Education


TEST #1
UPDATE: DUE February 28, 2014

1. Explain each of the six characteristics of the adult learner as outlined on
pages 64-68. In your explanation, provide personal illustrations on three of
these six characteristics from your own experience as a learner. (20 pts)
The first characteristic of adult learning is the learners need to know. Its so important for
adults to realize why they need to know something in order for them to feel motivated to
actually put effort into learning it. They need to understand how the material is going to
be practical in their lives so that they have a reason to learn it. Ive seen this especially
evident in my math classes throughout upper high school and college and am guilty of
taking this approach myself when it comes to math. Its hard not to ask the question
When am I actually going to use this in my life? Without seeing how practical it is to
know the quadratic equation or how to complete exponential math problems, the learner
tends to not do as well at mastering the material. The next step is the learners
self-concept. The adult learner is usually very independent and used to running his or her
own life and its incredibly humbling to have to admit that they need help in a certain
area and rely on you to teach them. The less they have to rely on your instruction and can
feel like theyre in charge of their own learning, the better they tend to do in a class.
Adults seems to learn best by self-directed learning, where they can kind of teach
themselves and ask you for assistance in areas that they need help in. The next
characteristic of adult learning is the role of the learners experience. This is a huge area
that is important to understand when it comes to adult learning because every adult is
unique and different even more so than kids. They all bring something different to the
table and approach the subject in unique ways. When I taught adult swim lessons back in
high school I totally realized this principle. When I taught the kids I would sit them down
on the edge of the pool and go through everything with them all together but with the
adult class I would give them something that they could start off with and then go around
to each individual swimmer and help them one by one and give them all different ideas of
things to do to help them get better. They all leaned in unique and different ways and all
had things that they were better and worse at and I had to personalize each ones learning
experience. The fourth characteristic of adult learning is the learners readiness to learn.
They learner has to be in a place where they are ready to learn the material in their own
life. The material has to come to them in a period in their life when they really need it and
are interested about learning about it. Fifth is their orientation to learning. Adults learn
from a life centered perspective meaning that they learn things best in ways that will
apply to their needs. Like learning math problems based on math that you have to do in
the store or banks or leaning how to write business letters instead of writing papers that
they dont feel apply to them. Lastly is motivation. Adults dont do good in school to
receive an external rewards, they are wired to be more focused on internal motivation like
self-esteem or higher job satisfaction. I know that I always am motivated by my love for
the people in Africa and my hope for the future. I want to learn all I can, not just get good
grades so that I can do the best job I can when I end up overseas in the future.





2. Explain the meaning of theory, education, and learning? What is the
difference between education and learning? Which educational theory makes
the most sense to you? What learning theory makes the most sense to you?
(20 pts)
A theory is a group or set of simple and understandable assumptions that we believe seem
to be true about a phenomenon. They havent been scientifically proven, but have been
consistently true throughout time in many different scenarios so we believe them to be
true. Learning is how people go about acquiring knowledge or feelings or skills that
werent previously known to the learner. Education should induce change in the life of
the learner and change the way he or she thinks, feels or acts. Education is the acquiring
of that same knowledge, feeling, or skill but done in a more formal setting that includes
teachers and students or learners. So education is always learning in the fact that the
student is learning something from the educator, but learning isnt always education if it
isnt done in a more formal setting. The educational theories that make the most sense to
me are a mix between the progressive and humanistic theories. I like that the humanistic
theory really focuses on the individual learners and personalized the educational
experience that fits each student better. The progressive focuses on making it practical
and useable in real life situations. Its more hands on and focuses on using the knowledge
in their own lives. The learning theory that makes the most sense to me is the Humanistic
theory. I like that the learner is in charge of directing their own learning and that they
make the call on what they choose to focus on and how they want to learn it.

3. What is the difference between being a propounder and an interpreter of
educational theory? Name a propounder that you read about and describe
what he or she propounded. Why is the task of an interpreter a difficult
task? How do you see yourself (As a propounder, an interpreter, or
something else)? (20 pts)
A propounder of an educational theory is someone who is more of a decisive leader
when it comes to making and deciding on theories. Interpreters are usually better at
organizing details and getting information together. It tends to take more time for
them to agree on a theory and finish it. One famous propounder we talked about was
Skinner. Skinner was a behaviorist who believed that teaching was just rearranging
punishments and rewards in such a way that the student, through guided response,
could learn the material on their own. An interpreter is a hard task because they really
dig deep into the data and weigh what they believe to be true and not true down to the
smallest details. I see myself way more as an interpreter than a propounder. I like
working as a unit and organizing people and details in a way that we can use to try to
find what we need to know. I dont like being the leader very much unless I have to
and I focus way more on the small details than trying to plan the big picture.
4. NEW QUESTION: Select a class that you have taken or are currently taking
at TFC. Using the process elements of andragogy (p. 115 in TAL) write
HOW you would carry out each of the 8 elements of the Andragogical
Approach as if you were the professor. Be sure to identify the name of the
course. (20 pts)
The class I am going to focus on is Psychology. The first element of the process of
Andragogy is preparing the learners. I would set up the new concept that we are




learning for example, the difference between the right and left cortex of the brain,
with giving some back ground information on the subject. Then I would ask the class
what are some things that they would be interested in learning about this subject and
try to work them into the lesson plan as much as I could. I might inject a few ideas
that I would like for them to try to master to and see how they react to that. I also
might help them focus on what we can realistically learn in this time period with the
background knowledge that we came in with. The second step is climate and I would
have a super relaxed and warm environment that people felt like they could put their
input in on any topic they wanted to and discussion would flow freely. Next I would
work on planning and come in knowing a general idea of what I would like to do, but
still coming in flexible and willing to incorporate whatever they want to focus on
within reason. I have to be quick on my toes and ready to adapt to whatever they
throw at me. The fourth step is diagnosing the need of the learner so I may ask what
they are taking this class and what they feel like they need to learn from the material
we are studying that way I know more what to focus on. As a class we would also go
through and set the objectives for the unit. I might come in with some ideas to help
guide them in the right direction but they can give me a few goals of concepts about
psychology that they are interested in learning more about for the next step.
Designing the learning plan would entail me coming up with some practical ideas of
ways to move from one unit to the next when everyone is ready to learn the next step.
I would make sure that we were all on the same page when introducing a new concept
and that it was what was most applicable to their lives at the time. The learning
activities that I would use would probably include talking with other people around
them and asking them how they think about different things. I can give them self
quizzes to give each other and let them interact to learn and pick up the knowledge
themselves. And for the last step, evaluation, I would have everyone come back
together and ask some questions about what weve learned. Maybe play a review
game all together labeling the parts of the brain on the board in 2 teams. Then I would
ask a few questions and make sure that everyone was still on the same page and
understood the concepts we went over that unit.










4. Provide a one page summary overview of what you have learned in the first
half of this course. (20 pts)
I have learned so much already this semester in this class. I think that a lot of these
things I already kind of knew in theory but I didnt know they had a name and I didnt
understand how all of the pieces fit together. I really enjoyed learning about the 6
characteristics of an adult learner. I thought it was super interesting to really pick apart




why an adult learner is learning and how they approach the class. Its so true that adult
learners all learn differently, they all have unique life experiences that give them a one of
a kind approach to life. They all have different reasons for taking the class and new needs
that need to be fulfilled in their lives that this class will hopefully do for them. They are
also so much more self-directing than kids are. When it comes to teaching kids, you have
to practically hover over them and spoon feed them the concepts and make sure that they
stay on task. With adults, usually if they find themselves in the position to need to take
the class, they will apply themselves and really dig deeper so that they understand the
concept on a deeper level. They will work harder and put 100% into learning because
they are internally motivated and self-directed. I just think this is so true and so helpful to
think about when approaching an adult class so that you can focus on more trying to
facilitate a class than teach it like you would to children.
I also thought it was super interesting to really think about the difference between
learning and education. I feel like we are constantly learning things all of the time
throughout our entire lives, but when we actually take a class on a subject and learn in a
more formal setting it is called education. I never thought about the difference before. It
was interesting to look at the different theories and see which ones applied to me and that
I agreed with the most.