Salt Lake City, Utah
June 23, 2018
June 23, 2018
July 27, 2018
According to the National Survey of Student Engagement, xxxx is a national leader in providing opportunities in experiential education. xxxx’s Construction Management program has been at the forefront of this experience having required three progressively responsible levels of cooperative education experiences within the program of undergraduate study – each with faculty oversight. In addition to offering real-work experiences, these co-ops help in the evolution of students to becoming adult learners. This progressive exposure to the construction industry has also afforded the opportunity to re-assess instructional methods for students entering their junior and senior years to more effectively teach challenging and critical concepts drawing on the student’s experiences and desires to excel in their budding careers.
This paper offers a perspective on the experience of employing Malcolm Knowles’ six principles of andragogy, the art and science of helping adults learn within the university level construction management curriculum. In doing so, instructional approaches were reconsidered based in part on feedback on industry needs, which dictated considering more problem-based assignments, narrative discussion of relevancies and participative approach to instruction to address challenging concepts. Participative instructional approaches have included identification of knowledge gaps and extending autonomy in the selection of choices assignments tailored to market segments (e.g., commercial, heavy civil, mechanical/electrical, marine,) to meet the instructional learning objectives.
This reassessment process has its challenges as the emerging adult learner who falls into a distinctly unique class students. Whereas, the student seek and respond to relevancy of instructional topics and are driven to excel in their budding professional careers; in areas they lack a sufficient level of experience to effectively exercise critical thinking skills needed for sequencing construction activities, identifying construction risks and mitigation measures, and decision making skills – which they will soon encounter in practice. By employing an element of flexibility to Knowles’ principles a mixture of formal theory and practical examples is expected to offer students a strong foundations of these areas as they enter the professional ranks. In cultivating their adult educations skills, students are expected to accelerate their skills in the adult learning process.
This discussion is relevant to construction educators as it offers approaches and techniques to identify gaps in the student’s knowledge base, explore alternative instructional approaches, identifies important criteria for instructors to consider when selecting specific activities, and offers sample instructional exercises to nurture the emerging adult learner and promote life-long learning practices. These principles have been and are ongoing in a selection of courses at xxxx. This research is expected to build upon a sparse collection of writings on andragogy within the construction industry and may be the first to explore its applications in university level instruction. Within the next few months a formal discussion of our finding will be completed
Austin, R. B. (2018, June), Tailoring Construction Management Instruction to the Emerging Adult Learner Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--31040
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