Integrated Model of Effective Adult and Continuing Vocational Education and Training

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The learning of adult and continuing vocational education and training is more likely to be effectively transferred when the learning objectives of the program relate to the learning needs identified. Besides building up the target behavior
  Psychology, 2019, 10, 1985-1998 ISSN Online: 2152-7199 ISSN Print: 2152-7180 DOI: 10.4236/psych.2019.1015127 Dec. 9, 2019 1985 Psychology Integrated Model of Effective Adult and Continuing Vocational Education and Training Kaethe Schneider   Faculty of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Jena, Germany  Abstract The learning of adult and continuing vocational education and training is more likely to be effectively transferred when the learning objectives of the program relate to the learning needs identified. Besides building up the target behavior determined, however, for Effective Adult and Continuing Vocation-al Education and Training, it is necessary to understand the triggers of the behavior preventing the learning from the learning transfer. The goal of this study consists in developing a model of Effective Adult and Continuing Vo-cational Education and Training. Learning transfer as the behavior to bring over the acquired behavior to both similar and new situations is effective learning. The model to be devised will be a priori and synthetic. Essential properties and generalizations will be established by intuitive reasoning as a direct observation by the intellect and by deductive reasoning as act of deriv-ing the wanted theory from a general theory. The newly developed Integrated Model of Effective Adult and Continuing Vocational Education and Training combines two strands of models: the model of the immunity to learn and the model of intentional behavior. The context as appropriate environment and the trigger as the mental state of the agent are conditions for effective learn-ing. Keywords Learning Transfer, Effective Learning, Intuitive Reasoning, Deductive Reasoning, Integrated Model 1. Introduction The issue of securing learning transfer and enabling effective learning, respec-tively, has aroused broad interest in adult and continuing vocational education and training research. Haskell (2001: p. xiii) defines learning transfer as “use of How to cite this paper   Schneider, K. (2019). Integrated Model of Effective Adult and Continuing Vocational Education and Training. Psychology, 10,  1985-1998.  Received November 9, 2019 Accepted December 6, 2019 Published December 9, 2019 Copyright © 2019 by author(s) and Scientific Research Publishing Inc. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY 4.0).  pen ccess  K. Schneider DOI: 10.4236/psych.2019.1015127 1986 Psychology past learning when learning something new and the application of that learning to both similar and new situations”. The continuing vocational education and training seem to be less efficient as companies invested €28.6 billion in vocational education in 2010 (Roussel, 2014;  Schneider et al., 2014; Seyda & Werner, 2012) and only 10 percent of the learned material is said to be used in the work context (Schneider et al., 2014; Schneider, 2013). An understanding of the processes that further learning transfer is, there-fore, of fundamental interest. The factors influencing learning transfer are the characteristics of the learner, the design of education program and the program itself, as well as the situation and the climate of learning transfer in the respective organization (a.o. Baldwin & Ford, 1988; Broad & Newstrom, 1992; Lim & Nowell, 2014). The studies referring to the learner focus on intelligence and motivation (Broad & Newstrom, 1992). Motivation is perceived at different times, before training, during training, and after training. While pre-training motivation sig-nificantly interacts with transfer of training (Facteau, Dobbins, Russell, Ladd, & Kudisch, 1995), motivation during training is associated with “the extent to which training meets or fulfills training expectations and desires” (Yamnill & McLean, 2001: p. 200). Post-training motivation generally results from the reac-tion of the training, the organization commitment and extrinsic rewards (Porter & Lawler, 1968; Tannenbaum, Mathieu, Salas, & Cannon-Bowers, 1991). The studies that have dealt with the design of the educational program emphasize five areas of processes when developing the education program (Lim & Nowell, 2014): the learning needs analysis (Burke & Hutchins, 2007; Caffarella, 2002),  the definition of the behavioral objectives (Wexley & Baldwin, 1986), the selec- tion of content (Noe, 2005; Yamnill & McLean, 2005), the incorporation of prac- tice into the learning process (Kalyuga, Chandler, Tuovinen, & Sweller, 2001;  Shore & Sechrest, 1961), and the transfer of the training plan (Broad & New- strom, 1992). The learning needs analysis refers to assessment of the needs to be accomplished by the education program. The behavioral objectives are to be de-rived from the skill and knowledge gap identified in the needs analysis. In order to facilitate the learning transfer the content has to be applicable to the setting of practice. Learning transfer can be increased by incorporating practice into the education process in order to establish the connection between the setting of learning and the setting of practice. The transfer of training plan consists of ac-tivities of learner, trainer and supervisor before, during and after the education program (Broad & Newstrom, 1992; Burke & Hutchins, 2007; Caffarella, 2002;  Lim & Nowell, 2014; Mager, 1997; Noe, 2005; Rodriquez & Gregory, 2005).  The transfer situation and climate can be operationalized by the supervisor support (McSherry & Taylor, 1994), the peer support (Facteau, Dobbins, Russell, Ladd, & Kudisch, 1995), and the opportunity to perform (Clarke, 2002). In the current study, we refer to the design of the study and focus on the learning needs analysis while considering the learner characteristics as well: The first stage of the design is Learning Needs Analysis (LNA) to review learning and develop-  K. Schneider   DOI: 10.4236/psych.2019.1015127 1987 Psychology ment requirements. The function of LNA is to support individual, team and or-ganizational development. Occasionally, LNA is also referred to as Training Needs Analysis (TNA) or Training and Learning Needs Analysis (TNLA). The learning results of an educational program are more likely to be effectively transferred when the learning objectives of the program relate to the perfor-mance needs determined through the needs analysis (Burke & Hutchins, 2007;  Lim & Nowell, 2014). Although the necessity of a needs analysis is clear (Caffarella, 2002), there is no standard way of conducting it. The existing procedures (e.g. Grant, 2002; Mavroudi & Hadzilacos, 2013; While, Ullman, & Forbes, 2007) focus on learning needs resulting from the missing behavior of a person required for a perfor-mance. However, analysis of the behavior interfering with the target perfor-mance that needs to be modified is not part of the procedures. The learning needs do not only result from the missing behavior necessary to cope with the target requirements but also from the behavior interfering with the target needs respectively the intended learning. Besides acquiring new behavior, the behavior and the components of the behavior interfering with the target performance have to be changed, respectively. The learning transfer preventing behavior or components of behavior need to be integrated into the architecture of learning needs analysis. The current procedures of LNA referring to the pro-moting and not to the hindering behavior may result from a missing theoretical architecture for analyzing the behavior. Despite intensive research on the learn-ing transfer (e.g. Pineda et al., 2014) we lack knowledge of how to enable effec- tive learning through a thorough LNA consisting also of a learning transfer pre- venting needs analysis. The main goal of present study is the development of a model of effective adult and continuing vocational education and training. In the sections that fol-low, I will first describe the methodology and then develop the model. The theoretical model as a model of the facts about universals will be a priori and synthetic (Steiner, 1988: p. 19). It is a priori because it “… consists of state- ments whose possible truth is necessary” (Steiner, 1988: p. 19). “An essential  property of an object   is a property that it must have while an accidental property of an object   is one that it happens to have but that it could lack” (Robertson & Atkins, 2013). Because the analysis treats of essential properties and not of the accidentials, it can only be ascertained by reason (Steiner, 1988). The theoretical model is synthetic, insofar as it is not a theory of form, but a model of content characterized by essential properties and generalizations (Steiner, 1988).  This study makes important contributions to both LNA and the design of ef-fective adult and continuing vocational education and training. First, the under-standing surrounding the complex nature of learning needs will be expanded. The second contribution concerns the learning transfer preventing behavior and the immunity to learn (Kegan & Lahey, 2009) as well as the design of effective adult and continuing vocational education and training.  K. Schneider DOI: 10.4236/psych.2019.1015127 1988 Psychology 2. Methodology The model consists of sentences expressing the invariable relations between the properties. In order to establish the essential properties as the basic elements of the model, I refer to the method of intuitive reasoning as a direct observation by the intellect (Steiner, 1988). The method for the establishment of the essential relations is deductive reasoning (Steiner, 1988). I will describe both methods in the next section. 2.1. Intuitive Reasoning To establish essential properties intuitive reasoning is necessary. “Essential properties must be intuited or directly observed by the intellect” (Steiner, 1988: p. 24). Intuition is a “direct intellectual observation of the essence of what is given in experience” (Steiner, 1988: p. 92). It is a non-inferential form of rea- soning and “an immediate apprehension by the intellect of the nature of objects given as phenomena” (Steiner, 1988: p. 93). Phenomena are conceived in the broadest sense as “of whatever appears in experience” (Steiner, 1988: p. 94). In- tuitive reasoning is specified through phenomenology that presents the formal patterns for intuition (Steiner, 1988: p. 24) and consists of the following six rules (Steiner, 1988: p. 96): “Rule 1: Focus on the object Rule 2: Exclude the subjective Rule 3: Exclude indirect knowledge Rule 4: Exclude existence and the contingent Rule 5: Strive for complete disclosure Rule 6: Be analytic”. Rule 1, the focus on the object, refers to the contemplation, the intellectual not sensory observation of the things themselves. “Rules 2 and 3 result in a threefold eidetic reduction—indirect knowledge through deduction or retroduction, theory, and tradition are excluded” (Steiner, 1988: p. 96). In order to exclude the subjective according to rule 2 the inquirer has to ask the question about what the object is and not about the purpose of the object. Rule 3 has the function to ex-clude all the knowledge that is not directly given (Steiner, 1988). Through the application of Rule 4, we will exclude all that is not essential. A high school dip-loma, for example, is not essential to a humanistic education and should be ruled out of it. In the twofold reduction without referring to empirical observation with each characteristic, one asks “whether without it the example could be con-sidered an example of the same sort of thing as before. One asks what characte-ristics an object must have in order to be recognized as an example of a certain kind of object” (Steiner, 1988: p. 97). One example for the twofold reduction is reasoning about the question whether a process is education without an active learner and educator (Steiner, 1988). Rule 5 implies the norm to see all the ele- ments that are given in order to strive for complete disclosure. The last rule re-fers to the description of all essentials (Steiner, 1988: pp. 94-97).   K. Schneider   DOI: 10.4236/psych.2019.1015127 1989 Psychology 2.2. Deductive Reasoning A deductive reasoning refers to the process that the wanted theory is to be de-rived from a general theory that implies not only the wanted theory, but yet another theory  (Steiner, 1988: p. 99). According to (Hempel & Oppenheim, 1948; Schneider, 2004),   theory T1 implies theory T2, if the concept of the expla-nand a T1 (A) is the generic term to the concept of the explanand a T2 (B). If the phenomenon of education has to be explained, we can derive the wanted theory from the general theory of action. As education is defined by social action, ac-tion theory represents a general theory. Depending on the respective theory, the explaining variables allow an understanding of the specific process to be ex-plained. 3. Analysis of the Phenomenon of Learning Transfer 3.1. Analysis: Intuitive Reasoning The intuitive reasoning has to be conducted for the phenomenon of the learning transfer as effective learning. Steiner (1988: p. 5) has already accomplished this for the phenomenon of learning: The essential characteristic of learning is the “change in psychical state” (Steiner, 1988: p. 5). Steiner asks for further charac- teristics, that the object must have in order to be recognized as an example of a certain kind of learning. Learning “…, can either involve consciousness on the part of the learner and so intentionality or not involve consciousness on the part of the learner and so no intentionality…” (Steiner, 1988: p. 15). According to Steiner learning is intended: Non-intended learning will be conceived as a phe-nomenon in the physical and biological sense. She argues, that “…, where there is no consciousness, there is no phenomenon in the human sense” (Steiner, 1988: p. 15). The intentionality is an essential property of learning. Besides, learning is perceived as a process: Learning cannot be understood in the achievement sense of effective learning (Steiner, 1988: p. 16). “The term ‘learn- ing’ should be used without modification when the term is used to refer to learning in the process sense” (Steiner, 1988: p. 16). “Learning in the achievement sense adds effectiveness to learning in the process sense”. That means that the process of learning is realized. Learning is the intentional change in psychical state. The concept of “transfer” stems from the Latin: The Latin verb transferre means “to bring over”. It has to be asked, which object has to be brought over what? In case of this question, it has to be assumed that the product of learning, a specific psychical state is the object. That is to say that the learning transfer re-lates to the learning in the achievement sense. Hence, an essential property of learning transfer is effectiveness. It seems to be that the phenomenon of the learning transfer needs to be cha-racterized by a further essential property in order to be effective. If an intention-al change in psychical state has to be transferred, the intended change in psychi-cal state should be brought over from the learning setting to the target context. The prefix “trans” “reflects the idea of transport or passage between two situa-
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