Integrating Digital Photography into Adult Education

Integrating Digital Photography into Adult Education

Laura D. Hoffman
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61692-906-0.ch036
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As colleges and universities around the country face increasing budget challenges, pressure mounts for a more retail-based approach to education, where the needs of students and the ability of institutions to fulfill them are clearly defined. This article presents a case study of a successful digital photography curriculum for adult learners at a large school district in Southern California. The curriculum represents a retail-based approach to education grounded in meeting the needs of students, expanding their zest for learning and providing new educational opportunities. This approach rests on proven concepts of retail marketing woven into the fabric of the learning experience: Give people what they want and they will keep coming back; expand their universe of wants and you will have a customer for life. The article concludes that even with shrinking budgets, rising costs and a dwindling traditional student population, course curricula can be designed for student enrichment, program growth and ongoing institutional success.
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Ultimately, a successful digital photography program within the context of adult education relies on three factors:

  • 1.

    Understanding the characteristics of adult learners (Wang, 2007).

  • 2.

    Understanding how instructors can effectively facilitate adult learning (Penn, n.d.).

  • 3.

    Fostering an appropriate educational setting (Finch & Crunkilton, 1999).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Transformative Learning: Learning that results in a change in thought and approach.

ISO Rating: Digital camera sensitivity is expressed in ISO settings, analogous to film speeds; stands for International Standards Organization.

social networking sites: Personalized web sites for individuals for the purpose of staying connected with other people.

Andragogy: Learning strategies that are focused on adults.

Exponential Learning: The process of energized learning that leads to a desire to learn even more about a given subject.

Aperture: Lens opening or f-stop that controls the amount of light falling on camera’s sensor.

Visual Literacy: The ability to know how images affect and influence society or how they affect what an individual likes and dislikes.

Blog: Personal on-line journal maintained by individuals.

Experiential Learning: Emphasizes the direct experiences of the participant or learner, as opposed to vicarious experiences absorbed through more passive and didactic approaches.

Visual Literacy: The ability to know how images affect and influence society or how they affect what an individual likes and dislikes.

MP3 Player: Small, hand held consumer electronics devices capable of storing and playing music; some can store and display data files.

Metadata: Information that characterizes other information, such as when a document or image was created, who created it and other information unique to the creation and existence of that data set; metadata in computer data is often embedded “behind” the original data and can be retrieved when needed.

Retail-Based Approach to Education: Treating education as a specialized commodity to be offered to consumers using proven retail methods of consumer feedback, new-product development and marketing.

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