ERIC Number: ED247597
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Apr-14
Reference Count: 0
Teaching College English to Nontraditional Students: A Survey of Research.
A review of the literature reveals some of the issues English teachers face when dealing with nontraditional students. An overview of the needs and instructional preferences of such students grew out of a larger project being conducted on the subject at Seattle University, which showed that adults seem to prefer (1) a problem solving focus, (2) practical learning experiences, (3) learning that is incorporated into existing experience, (4) an individual approach to instruction, (5) teaching approaches other than lecture, (6) grades that are based on more than tests, (7) a variety of ways to meet course requirements, and (8) instructors who are interested in their progress, who are relaxed and informal in class, and who have a realistic view of their students' outside duties. Other studies show that successful literature programs for adult learners feature innovative scheduling and packaging, variety in methods of instruction, and a high degree of individualization. This may involve materials modified for particular students, selection of materials relevant to the students' own lives, or adoptation of existing materials. Many of the general principles used with literature classes seem equally effective for writing courses. Nontraditional students seek practical writing competencies. They are more interested in technical writing, including resume writing, writing compositions, writing reserch papers, and research design and proposals, and are more likely to enroll in shorter courses that stress essential writing skills. Some problems these students have in writing are lack of advance planning, organization, and sense of purpose in organization. (CRH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the College English Association (Clearwater Beach, FL, April 12-14, 1984).