ERIC Number: ED308334
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
A Review of Adult Learning Theory and Staff Development Research. Program Report.
Butler, Jocelyn A.
Adult learning theory and research on professional development provide a rich background context for examining school leader development for school improvement. The literature on adult learning theory identifies the following generalities about adults as learners: age reduces the speed of learning; adult learners bring life experiences to bear on new learning; adult learners exist in situations separate from the learning environment; and adult learners control what is learned. Research on staff development identifies characteristics that contribute to the success of staff development programs. Three researchers offer design components that emphasize a systematic approach to move participants from awareness of the new learning through transfer and application, a process for promoting long-term behavior change through staff development. Other factors that affect the success of staff development programs are relevant to the content or design. Drawing from adult learning theory and the research on professional development, a single set of descriptors can be identified as components of effective programs for adult professional development. The descriptors are divided into three major areas: those that describe program content and how it is determined, those that describe the design of the program delivery model, and those that describe appropriate post-program follow-up with participants. An outline of criteria for program description analysis by Jocelyn Butler and Robert Blum is attached. (53 references.) (YLB)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Northwest Regional Educational Lab., Portland, OR.