To help adult learners, edtech tools should be designed for their needs and goals, support them in virtually communicating with instructors and classmates and offer them a smooth mobile experience, according to a new report published on behalf of the U.S. Department of Education.
Called “Changing the Equation: Empowering Adult Learners with Edtech,” it’s the culmination of three years of research commissioned by the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education through its Power in Numbers initiative.
The goal of the project has been to better equip instructors with techniques, tools and open educational resources that will help them teach adults the advanced math skills needed for modern jobs, says Christina Ward, engagement manager at Luminary Labs, a consulting firm the government hired to oversee Power in Numbers.
“People tend to have ‘math trauma,’” Ward says. “It’s a sticking point for a lot of adult learners that we elevate in the reports.”
Luminary Labs hosted summits, interviewed educators and reviewed more than 100 educational resources to inform its four reports, handouts and a video series about making adult learning opportunities more effective and appealing.