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How do Adults Learn?

“I hear and I forget; I see and I remember; I do and I understand.” Confucius, 500 BC”

Andragogy, (theorized by Malcolm Knowles (1913-1997), Father of Andragogy) is the study of adult learning, & was developed out of a realization that there is a difference between the ways adults learned as against children.

Normal adults have different motivations, goals and expectations, and the way they approach learning is different. Adults are more self-directed and can be a rich resource for learning because of their life experience. They can also immediately apply what they learn and are more problem centred.

The Core Adult Learning Principles:

  1. Learner’s need to know
    • Why, what, how?
  2. Self-Concept of the Learner
    • Autonomous, self-directing
  3. Prior Experience of the Learner
    • Resource, Mental Models
  4. Readiness to Learn
    • Life related, Developmental task
  5. Orientation to Learning
    • Problem Centred, Contextual
  6. Motivation to Learn
    • Intrinsic value, personal pay-off

Our Programs assimilate theory of adult learning by Malcolm Knowles & the training program design consideration will include:

Assumptions Design Elements
Self-concept Increasing self-directiveness Climate Mutuality Respectful Collaborative Informal
Experience Learners are a rich resource for learning Planning Mechanism for mutual planning
Readiness Developmental tasks of  roles & responsibilities Diagnosis of needs Mutual self-diagnosis
Time perspective Immediacy of application Formulation of objectives Mutual negotiation
Orientation to learning Problem centred Design Sequenced in terms Problem units of readiness
Activities Experiential techniques (inquiry) Evaluation Mutual re-diagnosis of needs Mutual measurement