How Adults Learn

This next post is based on a conversation I had with Michelle Price of

At a past job, Michelle designed education programs for grown-ups. We were talking about a book I was editing that I thought was too theoretical, without enough meaty (well, tofu-y, I’m vegetarian) ready to use information.

In agreeing with me, she mentioned 3 principles of adult learning that I think are particularly appropriate for authors.
Here they are, in Michelle’s words:

1. Adults want to enjoy the process and have fun learning.

2. Adults want to be able to apply what they’ve learned in their own life – it needs to be relevant now.

3. Adults want to be able to share what they’ve learned with others so concepts should be simplified (not dummified) – an easy way to do this is to find a way to compare what you are teaching to something they already know, which will anchor it for them.

If you’re writing non-fiction, check what you’ve written against this list.