A True Statement About The Relationship Between Language And Brain Learning Styles for Non-Traditional Students

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Learning Styles for Non-Traditional Students

Constructivism is a philosophy of learning based on the premise that we build our understanding of the world we live in by reflecting on our own experiences. It is an active process in which learners construct new ideas or concepts based on their present and/or past experiences. knowledge. I believe that this learning theory is very important for adults because they have acquired knowledge from previous experience. Learning is contextual and learning requires knowledge.

According to Understanding Learning Styles (2008), constructivism has several guiding principles listed below:

(1) Preparation: Training should be related to experiences and contexts that motivate and enable the student to learn.

(2) Spiral organization: Instruction should be structured so that it can be easily grasped by the learner.

(3) Extrapolating from the given information: guidance should be designed to facilitate extrapolation and/or to fill in gaps.

(4) Learning involves language and the language we use affects learning. On an empirical level, researchers have noted that people talk to themselves as they learn. At a more general level, there is a set of arguments that language and learning are hopelessly intertwined.

(5) The crucial act of constructing meaning is mental. Physical movements and hands-on experience may be necessary to learn, but this is not enough. We need to provide activities that engage both the mind and the hands. (Dewey called this reflective activity.)

(6) Learning is a social activity. Our learning is closely related to our relationships with others.

(7) It takes time to learn. Learning is not instantaneous. For meaningful learning, we need to revisit ideas, think about them, try them out, play with them, and use them.

Constructivism calls for the abolition of standardized curriculum; it encourages the use of curricula tailored to students’ prior knowledge and emphasizes practical problem solving. According to this theory, educators focus on making connections between facts and forming new concepts in students. Instructors adapt their teaching strategies to student responses and encourage students to think critically and rely heavily on open-ended questions that encourage extensive dialogue among students (Hein, 1991). I believe this learning theory is best suited to teaching non-traditional students because they bring a wide range of experiences and knowledge to the classroom. They have real-world experiences that anyone can learn from.

Brain-Based Learning Theory is based on the structure and function of the brain and I believe it is a more appropriate theory for adults. The reality is that everyone is learning; however, traditional schooling often inhibits learning by discouraging, ignoring, or punishing the brain’s natural learning process. Basic principles of brain-based learning:

(1) The brain can perform several tasks at the same time;

(2) Learning involves the whole physiology;

(3) Emotions are essential to the pattern;

(4) The brain processes wholes and parts simultaneously;

(5) Learning involves both focused attention and peripheral perception, both conscious and unconscious processes;

(6) We understand that the best facts are embedded in natural, spatial memory; and,

(7) Learning is enhanced by challenge and inhibited by threat.

Gagne (1985) identified three learning techniques associated with brain-based learning:

(1) Structured immersion – creating learning environments that fully engage students in the educational experience;

(2) Relaxed alertness – trying to eliminate fear in learners by maintaining a very challenging environment; and

(3) Active processing – allows the learner to actively process information to integrate and internalize it.

With these three techniques in mind, teachers should design learning based on student interests and contextualize learning. Students should learn in teams and use peripheral learning, and teachers should structure learning around real problems that encourage students to learn outside the classroom. It makes sense that mature students, especially non-traditional students, learn better using this theory. A few years ago, when I was taking management classes, I used this method without even realizing it. All of my students were non-traditional students, most working full-time and taking night classes, and some were single parents with full-time jobs. In each class period, we would talk about real-life problems and situations we encountered in the workplace, and students would be divided into groups to evaluate, brainstorm, and come up with solutions. The experience and knowledge these students will bring back has been incredible. They learned best when solving real problems, and the feedback was amazing because it came from reality, not from an authority figure.

Right Brain and Left Brain As a left-handed person, I have sometimes been at a disadvantage in the “right-handed world” and in some cases have had to make a concerted effort to adapt. I’ve always been intrigued by the “right brain vs. left brain” theory, and I’ve come to realize that this is true not only for hand dominance, but also for different ways of thinking. The differences between left brain and right brain thinking are:

Left Brain: Logical; Consistent; Rational; Analyst; Purpose; Looks at parts

Right Brain: Random; intuitive; Holistic; Synthesizing / Subjective: Looks at wholes

Most people strongly prefer one of these ways of thinking. In general, schools favor left-brain thinking (right-handed people) while undermining right-brained students (left-handed people). Left-brained scholastics focus on logical thinking, analysis, and precision, while right-brained ones focus on aesthetics, feeling, and creativity. As a left-handed person, I can absolutely guarantee that I am right-brained!

To become more “whole-brained” (ie, equally capable in both modes), schools should give equal weight to the arts, imagination, and synthesis skills. Instructors need to use techniques that engage both sides of the brain—especially important for nontraditional students, as they have a more holistic view of the world and tend to be more holistic while also being logical and analytical.

Robert Gagne’s Theory of Learning Conditions. Gagne divides internal and external conditions into two types. Internal conditions include attention, motivation, and recall; external conditions include factors surrounding human behavior such as the arrangement and timing of stimulus events. He created a nine-step process labeled “instructional events” to address learning conditions. They include:

(1) attract attention;

(2) Inform students about the objectives;

(3) Stimulate recall of prior learning;

(4) Submit Content;

(5) Provide instruction in learning;

(6) Gaining performance (practice);

(7) Provide feedback;

(8) Performance evaluation; and

(9) Enhance retention and transfer (Understanding Learning Styles).

This theory is the single best way to ensure an effective learning program. Apps with “glitz and glitz” may look great, but they don’t always maximize data processing efficiency. If processing doesn’t happen, learning doesn’t happen. This is especially good for learning technologies where skills are critical. When using this training method, skills must be learned independently and build on previously acquired skills. The analysis phase should identify and describe the low-level skills and knowledge required for the individual learning objective. Only when lower-level goals are mastered can the next level be taught. Positive reinforcement should always be used repeatedly.

This is the best theory to use when teaching lessons involving motor skills. Training design should include requirements analysis, selection of media to be used, and design of training activities. When developing teaching methods using this theory, the instructor must be attentive to the concepts of learning and motivate students along the way.

The theories above are the ones I believe are most relevant to non-traditional students. In today’s age of instant information, why are we still educating our students as if we were preparing them for a lifetime of assembly line work? The Industrial Revolution is in the past and a distant memory. Today’s students need to learn skills that will help them in today’s job market and in today’s society. They must learn to make wise decisions, work well with others, and sift through large amounts of information.

As management expert Peter Drucker said, “There is nothing more practical than good theory.” Theories can tell us not only what should be done, but also what can be done and the process of achieving it. There are many theories and it is up to us as teachers to choose the one that best suits our students.

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