In evaluate the theories of adult learning such as the learning contracts, it is crucial to first understand the concept of adult learning itself. An adult learner can be described as someone who pursues education beyond the traditional age of school attendance. The adult in this case is someone who is regarded as mature and as having attained the legal age. The legal age is based on the premise that this individual can now enter into a legal contract with another individual or organization. The adult learner can however not be generalized to a certain age group and character as they are all different. Adult learners may for example be from different generations, have huge gaps in their ages and have different backgrounds and origins. The adult learning theories therefore seek to harmonize learning for the adult in the midst of all this diversity through various techniques in order to achieve the optimum results (Rothwell, 2008).
One of these theories is the learning contract theory.
The Learning contract is an agreement made between the teacher and the adult learner for the learner to complete certain amount of work over a specific period. This contract may also outline how the work should be done, who should be consulted or assist in doing the work and how the work should be presented and the standards to be applied in the presentation and completion of the work (Jarvis, 1995). The learning contract also indicates the criteria for measurement of success after the work has been completed. Within the learning contract also is the reward the student expects to receive once they have completed the work. This reward may be in the form of being allowed to progress in education, having recognition as a master of a certain task, having the privilege and recognition as being competent to occupy certain positions or work in a certain capacity e.g. a supervisor or leadership position among others (Bastable, 2008).
[...] (1995). Adult and continuing education. Routledge. Jarvis, P. (2004). Adult education and lifelong learning:theory and practice. Routledge. Rothwell, W. J. (2008). Adult learning basics. Massachussets: American society for training and development. [...]
[...] This is because the contract will only end up being duplicated which will erode the essence of contract learning as the plan will not reflect the individuality of the learner nor address the individual needs of the learner. As an instructor it is important also to spend time to explain the concepts and processes of learning contracts through learning practice exercises in contract writing. As an instructor or teacher one should also keep at par at all times with new information and processes regarding contract learning and learning contracts in order to provide ones students with the best approach for optimum results (sharma, 2006). References: Bastable, S. B. [...]
[...] (2008). Nurse as educator;principles of teaching and learning for nursing practice. Jones and Bartlett Learning. Boak, G. (1998). A complete guide to learning contracts. Gower Publishing Ltd. Brookfield, S. (2005). The power of crirical theory for adult learnign and teaching. McGraw Hill international. Jarvis, P. [...]
[...] Second the specific learning objectives should be identified and outlined. The learning resources and strategies should then be stipulated. The evidence of accomplishment, validation of this evidence should also be considered. The last step would be the reviewing of the contract by consultants. Once this is done the contract is now ready to be carried out and learning can then be evaluated at the end of the contract period (Jarvis, 1995). The use of learning contracts has been argued to be an effective tool in the adult learning process. [...]
[...] One of these theories is the learning contract theory. The Learning contract is an agreement made between the teacher and the adult learner for the learner to complete certain amount of work over a specific period. This contract may also outline how the work should be done, who should be consulted or assist in doing the work and how the work should be presented and the standards to be applied in the presentation and completion of the work (Jarvis, 1995). [...]
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