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Barriers to Adult LearningPROJECT By: Patti Blight, Sarah Cancelliere, Danielle Gunton, Avril Reid, Kerry WeirDUE DATE JANUARY 16 2013 COURSE BEC910CE- ADULT EDUCATION
What are some common barriers experienced by adult learners when theychoose to return to school or participate in workplace training?
ATTITUDINAL BARRIERS YOU CAN’TTEACH AN OLD DOG NEW TRICKS…OR CAN YOU?
THE CASE• Anita is over 50• She has been in her job for 20 years• Her job is being outsourced• She can not afford to retire• She needs to develop new skills• She needs to go back to school
THE BARRIER“Many adults have experienced so muchcriticism, failure, and discouragement intheir youth that their self-confidence and sense of worth are damaged. In a new learning environment, adults often areanxious, fear failure, and dread rejection by their peer group (Kennedy, 2003).”
ALLEVIATING THE FEARS Provide a safe and welcomingenvironment Have students interact and discussprior experiencesHave students explain their goals Provide students with detailed courseoutline and expectations
THE EDUCATOR“Part of being an effective educatorinvolves understanding how adults learn best (Lieb,1991)”.
APPLYING KNOWLESKNOWLES’ EDUCATOR’S ROLEPRINCIPLES Be a facilitator:1. Adults are internally Understand how adultsmotivated and self- learn and allow studentsdirected to participate in the direction of the class Recognize and accommodate different learning styles
APPLYING KNOWLESKNOWLES’ PRINCIPLES EDUCATOR’S ROLE2. Adults bring life Acknowledge value ofexperiences and previous experienceknowledge to learningexperiences
APPLYING KNOWLES EDUCATOR’S ROLEKNOWLES’PRINCIPLES Show direct link between course material3. Adults are goal and student’s goalsoriented Use real case studies to examine theory
APPLYING KNOWLESKNOWLES’ EDUCATOR’S ROLEPRINCIPLES Provide assignment options that reflect4. Adults are relevancy student interestsoriented Provide students with reflective questions to assess connection to goals
APPLYING KNOWLES EDUCATOR’SKNOWLES’ ROLEPRINCIPLES Encourage active5. Adults are practical participation allowing students to experiment and develop self efficacy Provide feedback on a regular basis
APPLYING KNOWLESKNOWLES’ EDUCATOR’S ROLEPRINCIPLES Acknowledge past6. Adult learners like to be experiencerespected Treat adult learner as an equal Promote an environment for expression of ideas
Most adults have their hands full.Between work, family and homeresponsibilities, we can feel like wecan go a little crazy. Is there really enough time in theday and extra money to spend ongrowing ourselves intellectually?
THE CASE•Sandra is 40 years oldShe’s a wife and mother of three childrenShe’s been a Medical Lab Assistant for 18 yearsShe feels she cannot progress further in her career•She and her husband are worried about future tuition costs for their childrenShe needs to expand her career by developing new skillsShe wants to go back to school
THE BARRIER“How will I juggle family, work and school?There are only so many hours in a day…Women, by characteristic, experience a greateramount of guilt about her student role if shefeels it interrupts her responsibility formaintaining her role within the family.Consequently, if she feels too much strainduring this time, she will ultimately give upschool to make things easier.” (Shields, 1994)
THE FEARS Cost of me o f d ay extra Ti child ca t sui table re durin g no course h shift work o ur s for Cos Lack cou t of of ti rse to c me ma and omm terto c it ials ours e
ALLEVIATING THE FEARSSandra Can... 1. Discuss with her family how further education will improve her career and self. 2. Ask her family to compromise. Example: Older children can help with lunch preparation and basic house keeping tasks Form a realistic household budget to accommodate the added costs of schooling. Form a realistic household budget to accommodate the added costs of schooling. • Form a realistic household budget to accommodate the added costs of schooling.
ALLEVIATING THE FEARSSandra Can... 4. Develop time management strategies. Organize with a point/task by point/task on a calendar to understand her own abilities and how to adjust her life to accommodate others. Example: Put on calendar dates of school, work, and family events. Put due dates for bills, school assignments, etc.
THE EDUCATOR “Much of the excitement of learning is in the evolving, unpredictable and unanticipated learning that inevitablyoccurs. Realizing that the richest resourcein the classroom are the members present,helped teachers of adults to relax and enjoythemselves too. Such congruence between belief and practice enhanced all.” (Barer- Stein and Draper, 1993).
Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of NeedsMaslow Need EDUCATOR’S ROLE1. Physiological Need. Ensure the classroomRefers to the basic environment isbodily requirements comfortable,needed to survive Equipment and resources must be in working order Offer short breaks throughout the lesson.
Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of NeedsMaslow Need EDUCATOR’S ROLE2. Safety Need. Set clear expectations for theRefers to the course desire to be safe from Provide a personal introduction physical or to help students feel at ease emotional injury These strategies will help the educator seem more approachable when student issues arise
Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of NeedsMaslow Need EDUCATOR’S ROLE3. Social Need. Creating an “ice breaker” lesson:Refers to the Form the students into smallneed for love, groups and allow them tobelonging, and introduce themselvesacceptance from Have students talk about theirothers strengths, weaknesses, and state their expectations for the course
Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of NeedsMaslow Need EDUCATOR’S ROLE4. Esteem Need. Constantly provide positiveRefers to the need and negative feedback toto be seen by students. (Also known asothers, as well as “Constructive Criticism”)themselves, as a Be flexible and understandingperson of worth of the hectic schedules ofand importance students Guide them to success within the course
Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of NeedsMaslow Need EDUCATOR’S ROLE5. Self- Provide consistentActualization Need. evaluations:Refers to the Congratulate students ondesire to reach something they accomplishedone’s own on a task or assignmentpotential and level Encourage students withof succession specific guidelines on how to move beyond their comfort levels.
THE CASE• Viktor is 28 years old• He wants to progress in his career• He has a central auditory processing disorder (CAPD) • He has trouble distinguishing speech from background noise • He has mild difficulties reading and writing• He wants to go back to school
THE BARRIERS Students reported that learning barriers stemmed from what they experienced as a lack ofinstructorcooperation and school resources to accomodate their individual needs. (Fuller et al. 2004)
THE FEARS rces re resou ort ant e the to supp I do n’t w o Ar ers t avai lable ? m y pe e me What if ity m the roo plarge an m is d I can’ the inst t hear ructor? e in s t ructor W ill th e me? acco modat
ALLEVIATING THE FEARSUsed varied instructional strategies Be ready to modify assignments forindividual learner needs Ask the student to suggestaccommodations that have worked in thepastTreat students fairly and equitably
WHAT IS FAIR?“The definition of fairness has little todo with treating people in an identicalmanner. Fairness means that everyone gets what he or she needs.” (Lavoie, 1989)
THE ROLE OF THE EDUCATOR Instead of focusing on a student’smedical diagnosis, concentrate on what learning barriers will prevent the student from reaching his or her full potential in the classroom. (Fuller et al. 2004)
ENVIRONMENTAL BARRIERSBarrier EDUCATOR STRATEGYClassroom is Seat student in centre of roomlarge and full of Allow students to tape lecturesstudents. Let students choose a quietBackground space for individual and groupnoises interfere workwith Viktor’s Encourage student to bring anylearning assistive devices, like a personal FM system (American Academy of Audiology, 2010)
INSTRUCTIONAL BARRIERSBarrier EDUCATOR STRATEGYInstructor uses Incorporate group work/discussionlecture format Enlist a scribe to take lecture notesfor all lessons. Post lecture notes and media onlineViktor has Provide written instructions fordifficulties taskstaking notes and Allow students some time toretaining lecture generate responses to the topicinformation before a discussion
ASSESSMENT STRATEGIESBarrier EDUCATOR STRATEGYInstructor has Contact relevant school office fornever heard of a accommodation suggestionsCAPD and does More time or fewer questions onnot know how to examaccomodate Print exam on yellow paper insteadViktor for his of white as it is easier to readexam (Bennet, Dworer, Weber, 2008) Allow student to answer exam questions using a computer or scribe
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