Process and Personal Orientation

The PRO model is built around the premise that personal responsibility for learning is both desirable and effective. Such personal responsibility can be fostered by a skilled facilitator or aided by the right kind of learning resource. It also is a learning attribute that can be enhanced in most adults. This part builds on such notions.

The first chapter, Six, describes how self-directed learning can be facilitated through a learning process orientation. After a description of how andragogical notions, principles, and literature have been foundational to our thinking, we detail an individualized teaching and learning process. The process is one we have developed based on our experiences, understanding of literature, and faith in the ability of learners to accept personal responsibility.

Various steps within the process are detailed. These range from ideas about initial planning that must take even before contact with learners is made to such basic features as helping learners become acquainted with each other and the process, facilitating needs assessment activities, and even engaging learners in individual planning or evaluation functions. The chapter concludes with information pertaining to the type of learning variables that individuals can control and some ideas about the nature of possible learning resources.

Chapter Seven examines the internal, personal orientation component of the PRO model. It focuses on how learner self-direction and the acceptance of personal responsibility can be enhanced. A variety of influences on self-direction as reported in the literature is reported, including such varied areas as the research on participation, humanist influences, and behavioral influences.

Finally, three important strategies for the enhancement are described. The first centers on notions of how critical reflection can be facilitated. Several specific activities are discussed. The second strategy deals with ways for promoting rational thinking. The third strategy is related to ways that various helping skills can be used to enhance leaner self-direction.


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