Andragogy around the World in K-20 Education: It is All about Trust

Andragogy around the World in K-20 Education: It is All about Trust

John A. Henschke (Lindenwood University, USA)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 20
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4249-2.ch049
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The author’s research in andragogy started in the late 1960s. More serious in-depth attempts were launched in 1997, just after Malcolm S. Knowles died—the author wanted to honor his legacy since he and his work in andragogy were influential in the author’s life. The author’s research yielded an instrument with the strongest factor being “teacher trust of learners”—a belief that applies all the way through K-20 Education. This is found to be so in doctoral dissertations, overarching trust behaviors, and threaded through the literature surrounding trust. Trust is found to be congruent between the author’s scholarship and practice. The foundation of this trust is rooted and reflected in the wisdom literature (Proverbs) of the Biblical Scriptures.
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Knowles (1970, 1995) provided the most articulate expression and most complete understanding of andragogy from the American perspective. The structure of the theory is comprised of two conceptual foundations: The learning theory and the design theory. The learning theory is based upon adult and their desire to become and/or to express themselves as capable human beings and has six components: (1) Adults need to know a reason that makes sense to them, for whatever they need to learn, (2) They have a deep need to be self-directing and take responsibility for themselves, (3) Adults enter a learning activity with a quality and volume of experience that is a resource for their own and others’ learning, (4) They are ready to learn when they experience a need to know, or be able to do, something to perform more effectively in some aspect of their life, (5) Adults’ orientation to learning is around life situations that are task, issue- or problem centered, for which they seek solutions, (6) Adults are motivated much more internally than externally.

Knowles’ (1970, 1995) conceptual foundation of the design theory is based in a process, and is not dependent upon a body of content, but helps the learner acquire whatever content is needed. There are eight components of the design process: (1) Preparing the learners for the program; (2) setting a climate that is conducive to learning (physically comfortable and inviting; and psychologically – mutually respectful, collaborative, mutually trustful, supportive, open, authentic, pleasurable, fun and human); (3) involving learners in mutual planning; (4) involving learners in diagnosing their learning needs; (5) involving learners in forming their learning objectives; (6) involving learners in designing learning plans; (7) helping learners carry out their learning plans; and (8) involving learners in evaluating their learning outcomes. Active involvement seems to be the watchword of Knowles’ (thus American) version of andragogy, and each step of the andragogical learning process.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Heart: The seat of the affections and passions, as of love, joy, grief, enmity, courage, pleasure; the seat of understanding; an alternative word ( trope, metonym ) would be the mind, belief system, conscience.

Congruence: Equality, exact correspondence, agreement, symmetrical, convergent, mirror image pertinence, consistency.

Faith: The substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen; the assent and personal embracing and acceptance of the mind/heart/whole being to the truth of what is declared by another person.

Trust: Reliance or resting of the mind on the integrity, veracity, justice, friendship or other sound principle of another person. From Proverbs 29 “He that puts his trust in the Lord shall be safe.”

Confidence: Leaning on the truth or reality of a fact.

Learning: Means, “persuasiveness” in a good sense, trust, belief, confidence in, trust in, to free from fear of doubt, to be proved fully, to be confirmed with the fullest evidence, to be fully persuaded, filled with certainty, brought to full measure, to achieve full or complete certainty, fully convinced based on the facts and belief, to achieve, bring forth, direct involvement of the person, to achieve complete certainty, convinced. Abraham’s faith is completely certain of the full agreement between God’s promise and His power to make it happen, which can call into being things which are not, awaken what is dead to life, and give Abraham posterity.

Metonym: A change of names which we say have some relation to each other; i. e. when we say “a person has a clear head,” that equals understanding, intellect; a warm heart, that equals affections.

Proverb: A short sentence or pithy saying often repeated, expressing a well-known truth or common fact, ascertained by experience or observation; a maxim of wisdom. The proverb is true, that light gains make heavy purses, for light gains come often, great gains now and then.

Credible: Worthy of belief; supported by evidence or unimpeachable testimony.

Trope: A word changed from its original signification to another, for the sake of giving life or emphasis to an idea, i.e. as when we call a shrewd person a fox.

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