Tact on addressing a diverse group of adult learners has been my quest prior to my enrollment in the Master of Education in Adult Education at Yorkville Universtiy. As a medical professional, I felt the need to acquire formal knowledge on Adult Education. However, family responsibilities and current job made me consider a school and a graduate program that can go along with these responsibilities. This influenced my school choice –Yorkville University and my program -Adult Education. Coming into the program I discovered it was a ‘goldmine’ of skills and knowledge. While in the program, to my discovery courses that elaborated on philosophies and principles of adult education were ‘the tip of the iceberg’ of the whole program.
Well-structured program planning and evaluation strategies were at the core of this program. As an Educator, this program has empowered me with more strategies and various models of program planning and evaluation that work and also capable of yielding great results if well applied in any setting. I now meticulously carve out my program learning objectives in line with blooms taxonomy, the cultural context of participants and institutional power dynamics. I now evaluate my programs combine the summative and formative evaluation strategies. Surprisingly, this program pinpointed my role in ensuring transfer of learning.
To me, educating adults, planning and evaluating programs will be excellent if diversity is not compromised. The diversity aspect of this program is a forum that has left an indelible mark on my view of any community of learners. I see the world as a ‘global village’ and the need to apply the knowledge from the diversity course to my work. Appreciating and embracing diversity in my practice as an Educator, program facilitator, health professional and an academic is gratifying, as I now view issues from a broad perspective, distancing my practice from my own opinion through collaboration with diverse learners and colleagues.
I felt a need to add some authenticity and creativity to delivering educative health promoting learning programs. This program has given me the opportunity to do so through numerous means. To mention a few, my capstone project which is a Major Academic Report is coupled with case studies of a few participants from my field. It has been fulfilling and interesting to find live ‘Early Golden Age Learners’ perspectives on semi-formal and formal learning because of the niche they occupy within my milieu, contextually in Canada and globally. The connection to my practice and authenticity of research I felt through this project gave me a ‘feel’ of Coe and Arthurs’ (2012) discussion on research.
This program increased my passion for life-long learning. Being in the midst of seasoned professors and learners was worthwhile. A renowned reservoir of knowledge, a Researcher and an award-winning professor whom I had the opportunity to work with during my capstone project is Dean Rita Kop. Having her supervise me is indeed a privilege. The Research Ethics Board requirements and clarity on the ontological base for my final project were reached through her guidance. Another remarkable Professor is Dr. Darryl Bautista. He guided me through my independent study. I acquired great insight on reflective writing, critiquing articles and writing my final project from him. Another seasoned professor whose discussions and feedbacks on diversity stirred me up is Dr. Randee Lawrence. That name echoes the word ‘diversity’ in my ears. She is a ‘catalyst’ to any open-minded learner. In fact, every professor I met in the course of this program has contributed to my understanding and facilitation of any adult audience either in educative sessions, health issues or other areas.
Perhaps the most important difference this program and instructors have made is best described by the quote of Mark van Doren which says “The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery”.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Master of Education in Adult Education student Victoria Momoh is in her final semester of the program. In her native Nigeria Victoria was one of the Medical Officer of Health in Edo State. She had the opportunity to be involved in the planning and execution of many health promotion programs like national immunization programs, flood disaster management, world health organisation projects and nutrition programs before migrating to Canada.
Now, she has an inclination, she said towards, the administrative aspect of health and works as administrative staff at a family practice clinic in Brampton, Ontario. She is also a program facilitator and administrative assistant in a long-term care home. She is married and has three children.
Arthur, J., Waring, M., Coe, R. & Hedges, L. (2012). Research methods and methodologies in education. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. 31-33.