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Adult Learning: Applications and Benefits

Adult learning

June 21 2022 - Did you know that adults over 25 make up 40% of enrollment in U.S. higher education? This amounts to about eight million adult learners.

Of course, no one is too old to learn, and it's not uncommon for adults to continue their education later than others. But learning as an adult is different from learning as a child, as is how learning is applied.

Are you interested in understanding the applications and benefits of adult learning? Read on for more information.

Applying Adult Learning

Adults process information differently than children. Therefore, it makes sense that teaching adults require a different approach.

Andragogy, the art and science of teaching adults, is based upon five pillars. Those pillars are as follows:

1. A Maturing Self-Concept

An adult has gone from being dependent on others to being independent and self-driven. This calls for adults to diagnose their own learning needs, form their own goals, determine their own learning materials, and evaluate their learning outcomes.

2. Increasing Experience

As people grow, they develop more experience which allows them to become more intuitive. This is something children don't have, as they depend on the experience of adults to guide them.

3. An Increasing Readiness to Learn

As more responsibilities develop in an adult's life (e.g. work, a family, etc.), they are more eager to learn how to fulfill their responsibilities well. Their readiness to learn is oriented around their duties in life.

4. A Shifting Application and Orientation

As adults grow, they encounter more problems to face than most children are capable of handling. They encounter problems, learn to solve those problems, and apply those problem-solving skills to future problems.

5. An Internal Motivation to Learn

While external matters motivate a child's learning (i.e. they are required to go to school), adults are inwardly motivated by a desire for self-development. They want to move up in their careers, learn new skills, and be able to solve problems.

Because of these pillars, adult learning is self-directed, and it often takes the form of workshops, group activities, and having to think about real-life situations they may face.

Benefits of Adult Learning

Adult learners are often more passionate about what they are learning, leading to a happier life. They also have more opportunities to develop social and interpersonal skills, which help to build valuable connections personally and professionally.

Adult learning also opens more doors and employment opportunities. Knowledge, skills, and problem-solving abilities make one stand out to employers, and they increase a person's odds of promotion.

And all-in-all, adult learning can improve one's confidence and self-esteem. As they develop more skills and overcome more obstacles, they feel like they are able to overcome more of what life throws at them.

Perhaps you're interested in continuing education or are already on the path and looking for more learning aids. The courses offered by can be of great use to you. You can find more information here.

More Adult Learning Tips

Adult learning is an opportunity to develop a wider skill set and grow as a maturing individual. Consider continuing education for your personal and professional growth.

Visit our Skills section for more articles like this.

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