ERIC Number: ED244929
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Apr
Reference Count: 0
How Adults Learn: An Interview Study of Leading Researchers, Policy Makers and Staff Developers.
An interview study examined the assumptions about adult learning held by 28 educational policy-makers, researchers, and staff developers. Fifteen assumptions were inferred from the interview data, each forming a dimension that describes learning as experienced by the participants: (1) Adult learning experiences are envisioned as similar for all individuals; (2) Designs for adult learning through staff development are based upon the learning styles of the designer; (3) If an activity or experience cannot be assigned meaning, learning does not occur; (4) Meaning is established by the interaction of experience and purpose; (5) Experience must be processed through self-reflection, analysis, and critique; (6) The creation and resolution of cognitive dissonance is a critical element in learning; (7) Learners seek cognitive dissonance; (8) Significant learning results in the transformation of the self; (9) The emerging self and learning are synergistically related; (10) Relationships are important in the emergence of the self; (11) Learning is a process of emancipation; (12) Learning is a self-directing process; (13) Adult development is not automatic, but is a function of emancipation, purpose, and self-critique; (14) How adults learn, derive meaning, identify interests, and find purpose is not considered developmental; and (15) Language development and thought are interrelated and important to self-direction. Implications drawn from these assumptions are explored in the areas of higher education, learning in the workplace, staff development, and adult learning and networking. (JD)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Researchers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (68th, New Orleans, LA, April 23-27, 1984).