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Malcolm S. Knowles. “The Accidental Andragogue”. Ron Eicher CAE 213 March 17, 2012. Malcolm Knowles. A Biographical Journey : Key individuals and events in the life of Malcolm S. Knowles. Malcolm Knowles. A biographical journey…. Born 1913; grew up in Missoula, Montana Good parents

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slide1

Malcolm S. Knowles

“The Accidental Andragogue”

Ron Eicher

CAE 213

March 17, 2012

slide2

Malcolm Knowles

A Biographical Journey:

Key individuals and events

in the life of

Malcolm S. Knowles

slide3

Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • Born 1913; grew up in Missoula, Montana
  • Good parents
  • Studied at Harvard
  • Intended to work for the Foreign Service
  • Met his wife (Hulda) at Harvard

Cyril O .Houle

Hulda?

slide4

Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • 1934: graduated from Harvard
  • Enrolled in Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy
  • Applied for job with State Department
  • Three year wait for entry.
  • Married in 1935; needed job
  • Joined the new National Youth Administration (NYA)

NYA parade float

slide5

Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • Met Eduard Lindeman (supervised NYA training program)
  • Mentored by Lindeman
  • Knowles: “The thing I remember most vividly about this first encounter was the intensity with which Lindeman listened to me; his facial expression and eyes were a classic study in concentration” (MAE 8).

Eduard Lindeman

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Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • 1943: Drafted into the Navy
  • Read widely about adult education
  • 1946: Left navy and pursued master’s at the University of Chicago
  • Took job at Central Chicago YMCA: Director of Adult Education

Carl Rogers

slide7

Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • Early in master's program attended a seminar about group counseling “It was exhilarating. I began to sense what it means to get ‘turned on’ to learning. I began to think about what it means to be a facilitator of learning rather than a teacher” (MAE 14).
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Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • Worked at YMCA full-time (1946- 1960)
  • 1949: earned master’s
  • 1950: Published first book (thesis) Informal Adult Education
  • Executive Director of Adult Education Association (AEA)
  • 1960: earned Ph. D.
  • Launched graduate program in AE at Boston University
  • Nearly resigned after first year
slide9

Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • Spent 14 years in Boston
  • Produced two key texts during this time:
  • The Modern Practice of Adult Education (1970)
  • The Adult Learner (1973)
slide10

Malcolm Knowles

A biographical journey…

  • 1974: Moved to North Carolina State University
  • Established graduate AE program and taught his favorite courses “totally on the andragogical model” (21).
  • Retired from NC State in 1979
slide11

Malcolm Knowles

August 24, 1913-November 27, 1997

“As an Andagogue, he educated with his whole being.

He touched my soul.” (Henshcke 3)

slide12

Socio-cultural Context

1930’s and 40’s

  • Knowles graduated from Harvard in 1934 during the Great Depression
  • World War II
  • GI Bill
    • 49% of all college students were veterans in 1947 (gibill.com)
slide13

Socio-cultural Context

1950’s

  • The “Golden Age”
  • Korean War
  • Space Race
  • Color TV, Disneyland, Elvis, Everest and…!
slide14

Contribution to Adult Learning

  • Popularized self-directed learning (andragogy)
  • Major influence on the development of adult education theory in USA
    • Development of NYA and YMCA training programs
    • Development of AE graduate programs (Boston Univ., NC State)
    • Executive director of Adult Education Association (AEA)
    • Authored key texts:
      • Informal Adult Education
      • The Modern Practice of Adult Education,
      • The Adult Learner
slide15

“Whatagogy?”

Knowles’ commitment to life-long learning

  • Principles of Adult Teaching (1948):
    • The students should understand and subscribe to the purposes of the course.
    • The students should want to learn.
    • There should be a friendly and informal climate in the learning situation.
    • Physical conditions should be favorable.
    • The students should participate and should accept some responsibility for the learning process.
    • Learning should be related to and should make use of the students’ experience.
    • The teacher should know his subject matter
    • The teacher should be enthusiastic about his subject and about teaching it .
    • Students should be able to learn at their own pace.
slide16

“Whatagogy?”

Knowles’ commitment to life-long learning

  • Principles of Adult Teaching (1948):
    • The student should be aware of his own progress and should have a sense of accomplishment.
    • The methods of instruction should be varied.
    • The teacher should have a sense of growth.
    • The teacher should have a flexible plan for the course (MAE 75,76).
    • “I had not yet arrived at a coherent and comprehensive theory of adult learning” (MAE 76).
    • 1967: Knowles is introduced to the term “andragogy” (MAE 78).
slide17

“Whatagogy?”

Knowles’ commitment to life-long learning

  • (Knowles, 1989): “I have been busier since I retired than I ever was while holding a full-time job, but it has been a period of expansive growth. I have met hundreds of able, smart, and nice people all over the country and the world, and I have learned more from them than they have from me” (24).
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Relating Knowles to CAE 213 Material

  • Knowles’ ideas are why courses like this one exist.
    • Self-directed, participatory learning (e.g.- this presentation!)
    • Learning contracts
    • On a larger scale:
      • Cooperative Extension
      • TEE
      • HRD
      • YMCA
      • Peace Corps
slide19

”I am not OK; and you are not OK;

but Jesus can fix us both!” (WHH?)

slide20

References

Corbett, Steve and Brian Fikkert. When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor and Yourself. Chicago: Moody P., 2009. Print.

Henschke, J. A. "Reflections on Experiences of Learning with Malcolm Shepherd Knowles," New Horizons Online Journal in Adult Education and Human Resources Development, Vol. 22: No.3 I 4, Pp. 44-52, SulFa 2008.

Kness, Ron. “60 Dollars and a Train Ticket Home: Looking Back at Veteran Education Benefits.” Gibill. 29 July, 2010. Web. 15 April, 2012.

Knowles, Malcolm. The Making of an Adult Educator: An Autobiographical Journey. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass P. , 1989. Print.