Pedagogy and Andragogy Relations Review

Differences between pedagogy and andragogy. What comes next?

Education is a door of opportunities for all those who have it. Education shapes the destiny of a nation and it is the main asset of a person. The traditional classroom system has existed for hundreds of years. Pedagogy or the art of professional teaching is the initial stage where the teacher teaches the students in a classroom using blackboard and chalk. In recent years several changes have taken place in the fields of policies, methodologies and educational approaches. One of the important issue that is been discussed among technology experts is the need for teachers to move from a pedagogical approach to an andragogy. This paper intends to differentiate between pedagogy and andragogy and also discuss some of the changes that need to be brought about in the current educational system.

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Pedagogy refers to the method of teaching where the child is dependent on the teacher for their education. As a result the teacher or the instructor decides of what should be taught to the students. Additionally the teacher evaluates the learner at regular intervals through exams and tests. The experiences of the teacher plays important role in creating the image or helping the students to understand the lessons. The teacher or the instructor also guides the students of what they need to learn in order to advance to the next level of mastery. In pedagogy the students are externally motivated by the way of grades and external pressures.

The term andragogy was first used by Alexander Kapp in 1833. Alexander was a German educator. Malcolm Knowles an American educator developed andragogy into a theory of adult education (Thomas). The term represents a way in which self-motivated people educate on there own. Since most of the children are not capable of learning on there own, andragogy is a technique which is mainly used by the adults. When they have personally set goals, adults take the responsibility to learn the entire course. As a result, they bring in many of there own experiences into learning and they will have much more understanding of what they are learning. This will not only help the learner but also help others who are learning along with them, as different experience can be shared among diverse group of people (floridatechnet.org).

There are many who support the andragogy way of learning, however this method can be mainly adopted by adults. Children need to be trained using the pedagogical approach because they do not have much experiences from which they can learn. Andragogical approach requires the learner to be self-motivated and focused on the goals they have set for themselves. In simple terms, it can be said that pedagogy is the age old instruction based teacher-directed learning, where as andragogy is the approach based on self-directed learning (Knowles, pp. 11-14).

Technological advancement has aided the growth of andragogy. The use of the internet has impacted the lives of people in the way they do their work. Internet revolution has also helped the development in the educational sector. There are many sites that offer online courses especially at the college level and higher. It would be rare to find a university in United States that has no internet connection and reasonable technology infrastructure (Scagnoli). Therefore, technology has become a powerful tool within andragogy (Hays). Knowles (1970) suggested the transformation of the educational system for the adults that need to be different from the educational system designed for children. Researchers around the world think that it is beneficial to incorporate the experiences of adults and learn from these experiences. Though andragogy is a recent concept, it is further improved and self-determined learning is known as heutagogy or humanagogy. Heutagogy is based on humanistic theory and approaches to learning. It is expected that heutagogy is a better method to satisfy the needs of learners in the twenty-first century, and can play vital role in the development of individual skills and capability.

Even though andragogy is universally accepted, it is still having a link to pedagogy, as it continues to have a teacher-learner relationship. For instance, educational institutions have invested in hardware, software, and wired classrooms, but not much in resources for research, or in training, and support. Therefore, the center of knowledge creation—teaching and learning—still remains unchanged. Today, based on the requirement of individuals it may be argued that there need to be an educational approach where it is the learner who determines what and how learning should take place. Heutagogy, is developed for the same purpose and hence it is truly self-determined learning. The modern education needs to take up heutagogy, as this approach helps us to know how to learn and what to learn based on our interest and need (Hase and Kenyon). In conclusion, it is important that the current educational system changes and move towards humanagogy or heutagogy that will allow the control of learning to the learner rather than a teacher. Additionally, this method will create innovations and can bring in dramatic changes in learning. Therefore, it is time to move on from the pedagogical approach to heutagogy that will bring about several new ideas and approaches.

Work cited

  1. floridatechnet.org Pedagogy vs. Andragogy. 2008. Web.
  2. Hase, S and Kenyon, C. From Andragogy to Heutagogy. 2008.
  3. Hays, M. Andragogy v. Pedagogy Missouri University of Science and Technology. 2008.
  4. Knowles, M. Applying principles of adult learning in conference presentations. Adult Learning, 4(1), (1992).11-14.
  5. Knowles, M. The Modern Practice of Adult Education: Andragogy versus Pedagogy, (1970) Associated Press, New York.
  6. Scagnoli, N.. Impact of Online Education on Traditional Campus-Based Education. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning (2005).
  7. Thomas 21st Century Schools – Pedagogy Must Give Way to Andragogy. 2008.
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