Keywords

Adult students, Communication of technical information, Experiential learning, Narration (Rhetoric), Reflective learning

Abstract

This thesis explores why instructors should use narrative intentionally and effectively with reflection to better understand adult students’ perceptions of experiential learning activities in technical communication. The frequent use of narrative in technical discourse reminds us that the tone of technical texts is often appropriately informal, personable, and reflective. A closer analysis of narratives provides instructors with valuable opportunities to learn more about the motivations for and barriers to learning for adult students and to better understand how these students situate themselves in larger social and cultural narratives. Narrative serves many purposes in technical communication. Not only does narrative add a human element to technical discourse, but it also invites interrogation and inquiry into the technical communicator’s decision-making process. For these reasons, narrative is commonly paired with reflection exercises in experiential learning programs as a way for students to make sense of their learning experiences. If instructors can capture the essence of how adult students make sense of their learning experiences, they can determine if experiential learning is an effective pedagogical approach to teaching technical communication to adult students. Using examples of ongoing, initial and summative, and alternative reflection exercises, I illustrate how narrative can be used to facilitate the learning process in adult students and gain access to these students’ perceptions of experiential learning activities in technical communication.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2011

Semester

Spring

Advisor

Flammia, Madelyn

Degree

Master of Arts (M.A.)

College

College of Arts and Humanities

Department

English

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0003695

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0003695

Language

English

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)

Subjects

Arts and Humanities -- Dissertations, Academic, Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Humanities

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