Teaching Adult Learners

Central Institute of Technology

This four week course produced by Central Institute of Technology explores the role technology plays in the learning environment. It examines the working factors of teaching and the elements of instructional design. Learnings have provided me with a grounding in facilitating adult learners in an online or face to face learning environment. I am able to employ instructional tactics that promote a safe and accountable learning environment.

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Instructional Tactics

This module explores the elements of the cogs to successful teaching originally formulated by Barrie Bennett and Peter Smilanich. It also explores Malcolm Knowles' adult learning principles and the instructional tactics that can be employed to create an accountable and engaging learning environment. Examination of Jeanne Gibbs' Tribes Learning Communities highlights the importance of the interpersonal skills involved within negotiated participant agreements. Additionally, reflective practice and Gordon's Skill Development Model are examined and offered as useful tools for charting how learning new skills are progressing. Topics covered include:

Engaging Adult Learners

This module explores methods of engaging learners such as ice breakers, energizers, proximity, wait time and 'think pair share', an instructional tactic which provides a good scaffold for the instructional skill of framing questions. Lauren Anderson's 1990 revision of Bloom's Taxonomy is evaluated as a way of organising thinking skills into different levels while Howard Gardner's multiple intelligences supports strategies for identifying students' needs. Consideration of Glasser's quote emphasises the notion of how important it is to move beyond the lecture. Topics covered include:

Engaging Adult Learners Through Technology

This module contemplates the advantages and challenges of educational technology. It explores the flipped classroom gamification, social networking, social learning, and the bring your own device (BYOD) phenomenon. Educational technology meets expectations for learning to be more flexible and mobile than in the past, and caters to differing learning styles. This then changes the pedagogy as educators design for mobile first, encroach on student's personal spaces and see much of the learning power in the hands of the students. Topics covered include:

Key Components of Instructional Design

This module examines Madeline Hunter's lesson design model which focuses on creativity rather than a rigid formula. The SMART formula is evaluated for use as a template to create lesson objectives while the KWL chart is offered for ensuring teaching outcomes fill gaps in the learners' knowledge. Review of research conducted by University of Michigan, in relation to collaborative and cooperative learning, considers whether group work is more effective when time is allocated to focus specifically on collaborative skills. Low-key strategies in classroom management are discussed as course of action to manage classroom behaviour with adult learners. Topics covered include:

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