Do you yearn to teach, but don't really feel as if young children are your calling? Do you seem to connect better with adults or young adults? If so, then you should consider pursuing your Bachelor's degree in adult education. This field of study will allow you the opportunity to make an educational difference in the world, while still pertaining to the age group that fits you best..
As with any other degree program, you must first obtain your high school diploma before you can begin working on your bachelor's degree. Most traditional colleges and universities will require that you submit a copy of your ACT scores, a copy of your high school transcript to show that you were in academic good standing, and a few letters of recommendation. Depending upon your scores and GPA, you may want to consider applying to more than one college or university. It is important to understand that not all degree programs related to adult education will make it possible for you to obtain your teaching license from the state you reside in. You will want to check into your desired learning institution before making your decision to attend school there.
The course work that will lead to your bachelor's degree in adult education will be designed to allow you to teach students in a workforce development program, in a large corporation's human resources department, or in an adult education school. Although some informal education programs do not require their adult education instructors to have a formal training and degree, these institutions are few and far between. It is much more common for adult educators to be subdivided into categories of: remedial education teachers, adult literacy teachers, or self-enrichment educators. Should you work within the remedial education or adult literacy categories of employment, you will need to identify a more specific area of focus.
Common choices for emphasis in these areas are: adult secondary educators, adult basic educators, and English literacy developers. As you work to complete your bachelor's degree program you will need to take classes that focus on human behavior and development, instructional design, workforce development, program planning, adult learning behaviors, psychology, and adult education methods. In addition, you will be required to complete courses that directly pertain to the area you plan to teach. For instance, if you want to teach adults about the aspects of business, then you will be required to successfully complete a number of business related courses.
In your job capacity as an adult basic educator you may spend your time teaching students who have an education level lower than eighth grade. If you work in a position as an adult secondary educator then you will be teaching individuals who are working to obtain their GED. Both of these occupations will have teachers instructing in the subjects of writing, math, and reading. If you seek employment as a self-enrichment educator you will be teaching students about topics that they are interested in learning more about. Common topics that are taught by self-enrichment educators are: writing, photography, painting, or personal finance.
Outcomes for an adult learning is different than your normal student. When dealing with adult education it centers more on curriculum design and methods. Below are just some of the outcomes.
- Be able to create instructional materials.
- Design educational materials for use in different delivery methods.
- Analyzing the needs of the adult learning and created the appropriate learning experience.
- Use instructional strategies when developing courses and programs.
- Understand the ethical challenges associated with adult learners.
Adult Learning Theory
Educational Delivery Methods
Adult Education Methodology
Development – When designing a program for an adult learner you’ll focus on the goals of the adult. Typically undergraduates and those under the age of 21 might not know exactly what they want in a course or degree program. Adults have specific goals and are more concerned about reaching those goals.
Experience – Designing for an adult learning is different as they have years of experience. You often have to relate theory to real-world experiences.
Delivery – In adult education many like to learn face-to-face as technology can sometimes be a hindrance.