Knowles' Andragogy


For corporate learners—who are essentially adults—the instructional premise around which training programs are designed should be andragogy (teaching to adults), not pedagogy (teaching to children). For this, Malcolm Knowles’ theory is used, which has four key postulates:
  1. Self-concept and Motivation to learn—Adults need to be involved in the planning and evaluation of their instruction. This includes pre-assessments and custom learning paths for different knowledge prerequisites.
  2. Experience—Experience (including mistakes) provides the basis for learning activities. This encompasses practice activities with feedback and remedial reviews.
  3. Readiness to learn—Adults are most interested in learning those subjects that have immediate relevance to their job or personal life. Job-specific content and job-aids are provided for this purpose.
  4. Orientation to learning—Adult learning is problem-centered rather than content-oriented. For this, scenarios and simulations for real-world problem-solving experience are provided.

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