Donavant, Brian W. “The New, Modern Practice of Adult Education Online Instruction in a Continuing Professional Education Setting.” Adult Education Quarterly (2009): 227-245.
In this article the author researches how online education affects adult professional learners. The article looks to step away from focusing on credited learning such as a college course, but looks to investigate technology’s impact on learners who are already in a position and who require further professional development. The article aims to build the gap that exists in the field of researching adult learning principles and adult education techniques in professional development. The author takes a brief look at androgagy and gages whether or not this should be considered a learning principle or a guide as to how adults learn. The ultimate decision on the part of the article is that androgagy should not be a viable principle, but the understanding that is brought to the field of adult education by studying androgagy should not be ignored.
The author used a quasiexperimental approach initially to investigate the historical pre and posttest scores of professional development courses presented through online education to determine if any learning actually occurred in the course of online education courses. The second phase of research adopted the Kerr, Rynearson, and Kerr’s Test of Online Learning Success (TOOLS), which was a 45 question assessment that attempted to identify behavioral strengths and weaknesses and those attributes potential to either help or harm a person’s success through online education. Thirdly the article used an open ended questionnaire to address considerations of the delivery methods of the online education. Looking at three different types of research methods was helpful in showing a vast array of viewpoints of the efficacy on online education in a professional environment. It would be difficult to argue that the results were skewed one way or the other, due to the author employing various means to research and within those various means each method being different and presented differently. The author goes into great deal later on in the article presenting the results of each method. This type of distinction helps the reader to parse through the results of the research method that may be most interesting to them or the methods can be read as a whole within the article.
“The New, Modern Practice of Adult Education Online Instruction in a Continuing Professional Education Setting.” Adult Education Quarterly (2009): 227-245.
As a Technical Trainer in a professional environment I find that my research interests have evolved from general adult education and how adults learning differently, from children, to specifically adult education where it relates to professional training and development. This article not only covers my research interests, but my immediate professional interests. At the end of each of my courses I send out a survey to gain insight as to how efficient I was as a trainer and the material I presented. While reading the article I found myself thinking of the survey(s) that I send and pondering if it is sufficient enough to really gain the insight that I wish to attain. The article not only presented interesting findings on online education in a professional environment, but the article gave me thoughts to consider if the way in which I am conducting my survey(s) may not be thorough and I may be missing a large segment of data potential.