Key Points About Adult Learners
- Adults (individually and in collaborative groups) learn by doing.
- Adults come with a wealth of life experiences, values and world views, and learning styles which are tapped by effective teachers and team leaders.
- Adults are task-focused in their approach to learning.
- Adults need to "play" with their learning. In other words, they need to apply it to real world situations.
Adults learn best when:
- they have input into the selection of the content and even development of the learning experiences (or goals of a collaborative group);
- the learning is connected to the vast background of knowledge and experience that the adult brings to the table;
- the learning is both received and processed in more than one way;
- the learning is collegial and directed at solving specific job-related problems;
- the learner has ample opportunity to reflect on how to use new competencies; and
- following initial training, they are provided with ongoing support that can take the form of peer coaching or study groups. (Tate, 2004, pp.24-25)
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