In the 21st century, educational planning must consider empirical research that revolves around the concepts of John Dewey’s experience and education theory (Tyack, 1997). It is experience that is most beneficial in the learning environment that prepares the student for future continuing roles in society (Dewey, 1997). For emerging adults, the process of education should include goals and objectives that provide for constructivism opportunities. Constructivism is a theory that employs learning through an active process from which the familiar is used to learn new concepts (Bandura, 1997). While metacognitive evidences are necessary in planning for effective instruction, emerging adults are at a level of cognitive abilities that allow for much autonomy through the educative process. Therefore, a key in curriculum theory should provide for opportunities where students make sense of the world in which they live (Dewey, 1997). Colleges and universities provide core curricula to first year students, which provide a balance foundation for specialization. Thus, emerging adults need a program of prescribed curricula with some level of autonomy through constructivism.
Technology provides opportunities for emerging adults to use autonomy in the educative process. In college settings, tweeting students were noted for higher academic achievement versus non-tweeters (Tapscott). Facebook is another major tool that has the potential to advance learning opportunities. EBooks, iPads, and smart phones are all sources of technology that makes educative media speedily assessable.
To advance learning within the emerging adult age group, a goal may include requiring high school seniors to have experience in online learning. Many of the seniors that I have discussed online learning with are pessimistic about its course delivery. I believe this is because they have not experienced this type of learning. As educators, we include technology in the educative process but the learner is limited to face-to-face instruction. John Dewey’s (1997) argument for experience in education that provide skills for future continuum roles is something to explore in reference to high school senior online learning exposure.
Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York: W.H. Freeman.
Dewey, J. (1997). Experience and Education. Free Press.
Marshall, H. H. (Ed.). (1992). Redefining student learning: Roots of educational change. Norwood, NJ: Ablex.
Schunk, D. (2004). Learning theories: An education perspective (4th Edition ed.). Upper Saddle Rive, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Tapscott, D. (n.d.). Grown up digital. Retrieved from http://www.tvo.org/TVO/WebObjects/TVO.woa?videoid?24652643001
Tyack, D. a. (1997). Tinkering toward utopia:A century of public school reform. Harvard University Press.