Reflections: New insights I have gained in terms of the variety of roles that adult educators play

             When thinking of the role of an adult educator, as a generalization I see us

wearing a few different hats, so to speak.  With five orientations of learning, as seen in

Table 11.1 on Page 295 of Learning in Adulthood, we as educators have many options

on how we deliver content, speaking from an intellectual and personal level.  Depending

on the teacher and potentially the group of learners, will determine which orientation is

used.

Behaviorist, humanist, cognitivist or social cognitive may be the styles some teachers

may choose, I personally lean towards the constructivist approach, delivering a message

through facilitation which includes experiential learning and self reflection.  Experiential

learning and technology go hand in hand in a learning environment. 

                Knowles (p. 384. 1968) states  that experience (including error) provides the

basis for learning activities.  Integrating technology into a classroom for a student to

have physical hands on learning is key to engagement and full understanding.  The role

the educator plays in regards to technology is vital, we need to be one step ahead of

what is new in the tech world and evolve as it evolves.  The role we play here is being

the expert.  Whether you are using technology in your teachings or teaching a student

how to use a device, in order to gain confidence in yourself and have your student be

confident in you and your teaching you need to be the savvy expert on whatever it may

be that you are using.  Unlike the personal aspect of teaching such as coaching or

management skills where we have the opportunity to learn as we facilitate and create

discussion through questioning and each other’s opinions, technology is black and

white.  You know it, or you don’t!               

                The biggest thing I am charging myself with is research.  With technology

changing so rapidly and evolving into something my brain cannot fully process at all

times, I am making it a priority to know what changes are happening in the tech world,

understanding these changes and knowing what my resources really are.  To me

becoming an expert on certain technology doesn’t mean being able to defrag a hard

drive, reinstall windows and understand what exactly the motherboard does but

knowing what will matter to my students and being able to recognize the important

information from the techno noise and delivering this info to my trainees the best I can

so they can use these resources to make their every day work lives that much easier. 

This is my role as a tech savvy adult educator. 

References:

Table 11.1 Five Orientations to Learning (Learning in Adulthood, P.295-296)

Knowles (p384. 1968) 6 assumptions  related to motivation

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