As part of my learning theory course I’m asked to put down 15 bullet points that reflect things I believe about adult learners and learning theory. Here is the assignment:
Using bullets, identify 15 notions, thoughts, and opinions you hold about adult learning and learning theory. These should be characteristics and/or behaviors of adult learners, or elements or characteristics of what you believe to be good instructional design. No references are required. The purpose of this assignment is for you to bring together in one place your personal beliefs.
Near the end of the course I will have to resubmit this list with sources citing whether my belief holds true or if I have changed my opinion as a result of researching the belief. Ideally this first part is easy, just write what you believe right? Ironically I’m having a hard time defining that. I guess I’ve gotten so used to saying “it depends” when reflecting on the how and why of learning and learning theory. And in some cases there is a lot I simply don’t know so part of it is putting a stake in the ground to come back to later. Nevertheless this is my bullet-point list of beliefs as they stand today and I’ll be reflecting on them over the course of the coming weeks to come to a conclusion about whether my beliefs are true or not.
- I believe adult learners model the same behavior in a classroom setting that they did as children and young adults.
- I believe effective instructional design and learning should not be measured by a test or letter grade.
- I believe adults become better learners by becoming engaged with the content in meaningful ways.
- I believe that a combination of different models of instruction are more effective than a universal approach.
- I believe students are more engaged when they feel their choices play a role in the instruction.
- I believe learning is more powerful when it is self-directed and not instructor-led.
- I believe socioeconomic status plays a role in the effectiveness of instructional design.
- I believe there exists in every human an inherent desire to learn.
- I believe the lecture model is an extremely poor form of instructional design focused on efficiency rather than effectiveness.
- I believe good instructional design can and should be modeled off how children learn.
- I believe learners are unique and the life-experiences they bring to the classroom play a role in how they learn.
- I believe the act of reflecting on ones learning ultimately improves the learning process.
- I believe good instructional design has a clear goal and objective.
- I believe iterative change to instructional programs as a result of insight and observation improves their quality.
- I believe failure is a necessary part of the learning process.