In the education field, we have heard quite a lot about the “lifelong learning” concept and this will ensure a continuing development of our culture. People of all ages are able to take advantage of many learning opportunities. There are encouraging consequences that we need to consider that learning process is something that shouldn’t be stopped only until the 20’s. In fact, virtual learning environments could make it easier for adult students to continue studying about many things. There are many reasons why we should continue learning. Adult students could be young parents, developing professionals and retirees. They have different expectations and concerns when choosing their learning experience. Often, much older adults need to join a class with other younger students. In this situation, by keeping a degree of humility and a sense of humor, it should be quite easy to establish connections with other students. In general, students are sharing the same goals, so they could work together to achieve the same thing.
Adult students are known for the experience, so they can share their insights to younger students. In fact, they have a lot of things to offer. In this case, it is a bad idea to dismiss much younger students as “kids”. This will contribute nothing to the whole learning effort. In fact, young people often offer thoughtful comment and refreshing perspective on specific issues. Some adult students are actually technophobes and they use limited new technological implementations in their life. However, teaching and learning already change significantly in the last few years. Many adult students grew up when the Internet was non-existent and today, digital information technology already infiltrates all aspects of learning experience. E-learning is essentially a technology-enhanced learning method and in this case, the whole course could be administered and delivered entirely through the Internet. In this case, lectures can be recorded and downloaded as they are needed. They could be available as videos or audio recordings, also known as podcasts.
Students should be able to access online materials through a proper VLE or virtual learning environment. They could complete assignments, which will be submitted through the web. Sooner or later, adult students who are uncomfortable with latest technologies need to start to learn them as well. There should be enough helps found online, because many tasks need to be performed using latest digital implementations. Fortunately, latest technologies can be quite easy to learn, because there are easy techniques and tools that they can implement, despite their lack of understanding. With easy instructions, we should be able to do things online comfortably and we would be able to explore additional opportunities. If they are not able to learn more, young students are usually more than eager to help. In general, it is much easier to learn directly in front of the gadget we are using. It isn’t necessary for adult students to become expert technology users and with basic implementations; it is enough to do many learning tasks.