April 26th, 2009 - Can Adolescents Become Autonomous Learners?

posted Jan 15, 2012, 10:23 PM by Hamamatsu JALT   [ updated May 23, 2012, 6:46 AM ]

Can Adolescents Become Autonomous Learners?

Dr. Marshall Childs

In the April meeting, co-sponsored by the Toyohashi chapter, Dr. Marshall R. Childs gave a presentation on autonomy in adolescents and the obstacles that prevent autonomy in teenagers and young adults. Dr. Childs, started the discussion by defining autonomy and its value before examining the barriers to promoting autonomy in adolescents. Dr. Childs described two sources of impediments to autonomy. At first, conventional school organisation was explored in terms of the controlling effects of classroom schedules and activities on teenagers’ behaviour. Then the focus was shifted to the adolescent brain and how some areas of the adolescent brain are still developing into their early 20s. Dr. Childs suggested that these factors impede adolescents’ path to maturity though not everyone is affected equally. Dr. Childs concluded that an understanding of what autonomy is and the forces that drive students toward autonomous learning is essential for the teacher to facilitate autonomy.

Hamamatsu Chapter thanks Toyohashi Chapter for co-sponsoring this event!

Reported by Adam Jenkins

Apr, 2009