Role learning – neuroscience, learning styles, and andragogy

New perspectives on andragogy have led to the development of new thinking about the core andragogical principles, including:

the learner’s need to know self-directed learning, prior experiences of the learner readiness to learn, orientation to learning and problem solving motivation to learn. Additionally, the lack of homogeneity among adult learners leads toward the importance of understanding individual differences among adults that can contribute to the experience of learning.

Individual cognitive differences, personality factors, and prior experiences may all play a role learning.

Cognitive styles, levels of intelligence, and types of intelligence all play a role in the experience of learning for an adult. Effective adult learning professionals use their understanding of individual differences to tailor adult learning experiences in several ways.

This can be done by applying the core principles to adult learners’ cognitive abilities and learning-style preferences and using an understanding of individual differences to know which of the core principles are applicable to a specific group of learners.

Activity Instructions

1. Follow the link to complete the NC State Index of Learning Styles


2. Review your results. Be sure to follow the link on your results page to the learning styles and strategies and what they mean.Within your reflection make sure to address the following:

Include an introductory paragraph about neuroscience, learning styles, and andragogy.Copy and insert the graph to show your results from the questionnaire.

Describe what your results suggest about your learning style.

Identify any outliers (numbers that are much higher or lower than average).

3.Reflecting on your results, answer the following questions:Were you surprised? Why or why not?

Given what you learned about your style, how would you apply this information to your experiences in varying learning situations with other adult learners (e.g. school, work, etc.)?

What are ways you could address working with a diverse group of learners (cognitive skills, learning styles, personalities, or amount of prior knowledge) when teaching or facilitating a group of adult learners?Ensure to back your ideas with research.

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