Friday, 10 June 2022 18:06

What makes a tutor effective in teaching adults?

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As the old Latin proverb says — <em>repetitio est mater studiorum</em>. It just means that repetition is the mother of learners. And there is a lot of truth to that. This rule applies in particular to learning foreign languages, including English for adults.


They represent a significant percentage of people learning both in language schools and at university. This is due to the civilization changes that have taken place in Central and Eastern Europe over the last 30 years, where English is a ticket to professional development or promotion.

Methods Of Teaching English For Adults

However, repeating itself is not enough. Teaching must be based on an effective methodology. And there are many of them. Moreover, each methodology has its advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, it should be adapted to the individual abilities of the student, his age, his ability to absorb the knowledge, his professional needs, but also experience of the teacher.

Among the most popular methods of English learning are grammatical and translatable, dating back to the 19th century. Ancient Greek and Latin were taught with it. This method emphasizes the learning of grammar rules and the development of the ability to translate texts. There is little room for free speech in a foreign language. So it may not be fully effective for adult learners.

Another method is called communicating one. Its aim is to enhance the ability to communicate with the foreign language environment, and the grammar is just a background, a context of expression. This may be a good way for an adult students. For this, English lesson plans will work great

One more method is that natural one. The mechanism is similar to the learning of a language by a child. The native speech is not used at all. Psychology and the creation of a natural, stress-free learning atmosphere are a very important factor here. This could also be an inspiring tool for working with an adults.

What Skills Should A Tutor Have?

The teacher should also have specific teaching skills. These include leadership, communication, problem-solving, epathy, and especially the patience. They are an inseparable conglomerate of substantive values which are irreplaceable in the teaching language of Shakespeare. Depending on the need and the situation, a given feature is needed more, and another one goes into the background.

For example, it is known that the learning atmosphere should be stress-free and pleasant, encouraging further personal development. If, however, due to the lack of an age barrier, an adult student causes problems, mechanisms linked to leadership or problem-solving should be used.

Top 5 Practices For Teaching Adults

An adult student has different expectations than a younger one. Here are some tips on how to deal with this:

  • Remember that an adult student needs to learn language to cope with everyday challenges, especially at work. So his motivation is quite high, but sometimes it may be insufficient. She gets tired faster.
  • Older people are learning more slowly, due to natural neurological changes. This is worth considering.
  • Lack of an age barrier means that your leadership should be properly adjusted not to offend anyone.
  • Adults have their own views, so use the discussion of interesting topics to engage them in the conversation in English and involve them even more.
  • Integrate their experiences with the lessons, let them draw from their own life thoughts. Then your meetings will be even more interesting and contextual.


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