Learning with ‘e’s: Learning is learning

Steve Wheeler on good form discussing whether there are (or should be) a different term for adult learning than for child learning. He thinks not and I agree with him up to a point. Many differences between adult and child learning relate to an increase in context (greater focus) and connection (greater ability to synthesise other knowledge) combined with greater power to control one’s own destiny. Adults tend towards greater self-direction, greater motivation leading from choosing their own directions, and can deal with more complex and connected knowledge. It’s not a difference in kind, but in proportion. But more is different in a complex system and different is different in any system. The stuff and process that goes into chocolate brownies is not so very different from the stuff and process that goes into rock buns, but it’s helpful to have different words to describe them when you are in the bakery. Yes, it’s all cake, but it’s not all the same cake.


Address of the bookmark: http://steve-wheeler.blogspot.com/2011/07/learning-is-learning.html

I am a professional learner, employed as a Full Professor and Associate Dean, Learning & Assessment, at Athabasca University, where I research lots of things broadly in the area of learning and technology, and I teach mainly in the School of Computing & Information Systems. I am a proud Canadian, though I was born in the UK. I am married, with two grown-up children, and three growing-up grandchildren. We all live in beautiful Vancouver.

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