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Psychology and Educational Theory Application in Planning

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that psychology and or educational theory can be applied to your planning

I have reflected on how a small cross section of my world has been affected by being taught by strangers using different teaching methods. I have seen how certain individuals have erected barriers to learning merely because it is not the traditional method of teaching they prefer. The most important learning point I take from this course, is to embrace all methods of teaching, compare educational theories so I encourage learning, and not to be frightened of pushing the barriers to develop my students.

This course has opened my eyes to how I can plan my sessions so that the students will maximise their learning. I realise that a student's knowledge and experiences will play a large part in my planning and I understand that as I plan, I must set clear aims and learning outcomes so I know what will be understood by the end of the lesson.

Rogers, states that students should be at the centre of the learning process, and the teacher's role is to facilitate learning, helping to create the conditions and resources needed for learning to occur. I have always followed this theory without realising and understanding it. (Rogers, 1970). This is further backed up by a clearer understanding of Maslow's Hierarchy of basic needs, the process the student needs to progress through before learning can take place (Maslow,1970), and that setting the right environment is vital.

Obviously all my students will be adults. I have learnt about the differences between 'pedagogy' and 'andragogy' models. Knowles identification of the assumptions of how adults learn, highlighted my need to make use of student's experiences, their readiness and orientation to learn and most importantly, how I motive them (Knowles, 1983). Motivation will play a large part in how successful my lessons are. My unit is all made up of volunteers - officers who all want to carry out the role and are willing to learn. To this end, I must ensure in the planning phase that I utilise this in order to stretch their learning and use different methods to keep the learning fresh.

I recognise the difference between learning domains. I accept that firearms officers tend to learn in the 'psychomotor' domain. The physical nature of the skills we develop and practice naturally lead us down that route. We should not forget however, how important it is to develop in the 'cognitive' and 'affective' domains. We are expected to think on our feet and make instant life threatening decisions, many skills that cannot be achieved by practice. However, I do believe that there is a vital place in our training for the 'behaviourist' theory of learning, especially Skinner, who concentrated on conditioning. I am aware that if I adopt this theory, I should keep the processes short and look to reward



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