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Educational Philosophy

As an Instructional Designer in the field of adult training, my personal philosophy of adult education centers on empowering individuals to enhance their skills and knowledge for professional growth. It revolves around the principles of andragogy, which emphasize the unique learning needs and motivations of adult learners. 

Purpose:

The primary purpose of adult education should be to bridge the gap between existing knowledge and the ever-evolving needs of the fields in which adults serve. This can involve both technical skill development and the fostering of critical thinking and problem-solving abilities (Merriam & Caffarella, 2001). By providing relevant and practical learning experiences, adult education equips professionals to adapt to new technologies, protocols, and best practices, ultimately leading to improved outcomes.

Role of the Instructor:

The role of the instructor in adult education is not simply to transmit knowledge, but rather to act as a facilitator and guide. Adults bring a wealth of experience and prior knowledge to the learning environment (Merriam & Brockett, 2014). Effective instructors leverage this by fostering a collaborative learning environment where learners can share experiences, engage in discussions, and actively construct new knowledge.

How Adults Learn Best:

Adults learn best when they are intrinsically motivated and can see the relevance and applicability of the content to their personal and professional lives. As such, adult education should be designed to address specific learning needs, goals, and interests, while also providing opportunities for learners to take ownership of their learning journey (Knowles et al., 2015). Experiential learning, problem-based scenarios, and case studies can be effective strategies for engaging adult learners and facilitating the transfer of knowledge to practical applications.

What Should Be Taught:

The content of adult education should be dynamic and responsive to the evolving needs of the field and the specific learning objectives of the program. While core knowledge remains essential, the curriculum should also emphasize communication skills, cultural competency, critical thinking, and the ability to adapt to new technologies and evidence-based practices (World Health Organization, 2013).

Ultimately, my philosophy of adult education emphasizes the importance of creating a learner-centered environment that empowers individuals to become self-directed, lifelong learners, continually seeking knowledge and honing their skills to deliver the best possible outcomes.

 

References

American Association for Adult and Continuing Education. (n.d.). The learner-centered approach to adult education. https://www.aaace.org/

Merriam, S. B., & Brockett, R. A. (2014). The learner-centered teacher in adult education. Jossey-Bass.

 

Merriam, S. B., & Caffarella, R. S. (2001). Learning in adulthood: A comprehensive guide. Jossey-Bass.

 

World Health Organization. (2013). Transforming and scaling up health professionals' education and training: World Health Organization guidelines 2013. World Health Organization.

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