“adults are problem centered, not subject centered, and desire immediate, not postponed application of the knowledge learned.”
Objective: What have you learned from reflecting on this particular quote? What has caught your attention?
I look at this quote and can’t help but agree especially because I can relate personally. As an example, I am a chef who’s been cooking for 18 years. After recently getting married and having a child on the way, I believe it’s time for me to have a different lifestyle. The hours at my current job are not ideal for the life I want with my family and that could potentially be a problem for me. I believe taking the Provincial Instructor Diploma Program (PIDP) will advance my career towards becoming a culinary instructor. Upon reflection, I had identified that my current lifestyle may become problematic, so it propelled me to consider taking a program centered on teaching.
Reflective: What did you realize about teaching as a result of this quote?
From reading further upon this quote, I am able to understand why adults prefer problem-centered learning as opposed to subject centered learning. “Problem centered learning is preferred by adults because it is more engaging and lends itself to immediate application, which in turn solidifies the learning.”( Merriam, Sharan B., Bierema, Laura L., 2014, page 54). For me, using problem-centered learning in lessons can be beneficial as in the culinary industry it is very hands on. I can keep the class engaged by identifying possible scenarios where problems can occur and as a class, discuss how to find the solutions. I think the important key component is showing the class real authentic problems that can take place in a kitchen within a restaurant, hotel or any other kind of food service establishment. I feel this will have a positive impact because the student would want to relate to the problem they may experience in the workplace and therefore will have a real interest in the lesson.
Interpretive: What was your ‘Aha!’ moment when you read this quote? In what ways did this quote change your mind about being an adult educator? What was one key insight that you now have as a result of this quote?
As an aspiring educator and not having taught a class in any field, I feel I want to learn as much as I can in learning theories and different approaches. Problem-centered learning is another orientation for me to consider incorporating into my teaching. The key insight for me is the fact that adults want immediate results with their learning, and I can relate. The life experience they have attained makes them focus on what is most important to them in terms of how the education they are seeking is beneficial to their own livelihood. “If adults can see why it is important to learn something before they begin a learning activity, their motivation is that much stronger. Of course, much of one’s “need to know” arises from encountering life situations and developmental changes in social roles.”(Merriam, Sharan B., Bierema, Laura L., 2014, page 55)
Decisional: How has this quote and the insight that you have gained from reflecting upon it, influenced your notion of teaching or how you will teach in the future?
I will never know the teaching style I’m going to have until I actually start teaching but I look at problem-centered learning as a great way to motivate people to learn the material. They can have an immediate solution and have information they can use right away. To draw on this ‘need to know’ philosophy which is rooted deep in the model of andragogy, I have to show the importance of the current lesson and how it relates to each individual.
Merriam, Sharan B., Bierema, Laura L., 2014, page 54
Merriam, Sharan B., Bierema, Laura L., 2014, page 55