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Adult learners

Educating adults may differ from educating children. One of the most important differences is that adults have accumulated knowledge and experience that often adds value to a learning experience or, in some cases, may obstruct. Adult learners may present challenges to higher education instructors who are inexperienced with teaching adults or with planning adult learning experiences. Theories of adult learning take into account differences in students’ life experiences, including education, work, and family responsibilities. Instructors can be more effective in a classroom where adult learners are present when they have an understanding of the variety of ways adults learn, and the different ways they may be helped to learn.

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