Three Reflections

As part of my assignment I have been asked to reflect on the three following Guiding

Questions, “New Insights”, “Trends” and my “Web Conference Experience”.

New Insights

Through my research I have discovered some major differences in the way adults learn

(andragogy) and the way youth learn (pedagogy). Recognizing these differences will

help tailor my instructional techniques for my adult learners. In particular is my post on

being a facilitator. Adult learners need to know what they are learning can be applied

to their immediate situation. They do not respond well to the traditional lecture

method but prefer to be self-directed. Forced attendance with adults is likely to lead to

the adult learner being there in body not in mind. With adult learners it is better to tap

into the collective knowledge of the group and use this knowledge as a discussion

rather than dictating. As David Lobdell (1998) states “It is not unlike handling a major fire

or other incident using the Incident Command System where the Incident Commander

in effect facilitates the mitigation of the disaster using the collective knowledge and

experience of the group”.


Some of the trends in my field are the hiring of new firefighters that have a minimum of

a postsecondary diploma or degree. According to Stats Canada (see link provided) the

province of Quebec saw a rise in fire firefighters who have a post secondary degree in

1991 from 59% to 85% in 2006. Recurrent training is always ongoing and this new group

of firefighters is very media savvy. The use of Facebook, Blogs, Twitter, Skype etc. are all

becoming part of the norm and will continue to develop and be a part of teaching this

new age of Adult Learners.


It has been a few days since my last Skype call with my learning partner, so I have had some

time to reflect on this whole “Web-Conferencing” thing.  I can see web-conferencing as another

useful tool in the educators tool kit. It is a way to link the instructor and the student and even

fellow students together. Just as in Bloom’s taxonomy one can get the students to teach one

another. I personally was glad to have my learning partner and learned

numerous things from her, not the least of which was the comfort of knowing there was

someone else out there going through the exact same things I was.


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