The Science Behind Advent eLearning Classes


Advent eLearning students and potential clients often ask why our courses are so “dry” and difficult, rather than being more entertaining and exciting to watch. These questions are best answered by considering two key goals to adult learning our authors (mostly University professors) are trying to achieve. They are Transformative learning and Cognitive Restructuring.


Transformative Learning Transformative Learning is the leading methodology for adult education. Unlike childhood education, adult learning is focused on teaching adults to essentially "unlearn" erroneous thoughts they've had in the past and learning the right things instead. Here's a good article on Transformative Learning Theory if you're interested in learning more:

https://www.wgu.edu/blog/what-transformative-learning-theory2007.html


Cognitive Restructuring

Cognitive restructuring, or cognitive reframing, is a therapeutic process that helps the patient discover, challenge, and modify or replace their negative, irrational thoughts (or cognitive distortions). This is what we mean when we say that a course is "Cog" or based on CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy). All of Dr. Smith's courses are built around this process, and Corrective Thinking literally means correcting thinking by restructuring cognition. Here's a good article on Cognitive Restructuring if you're interested in learning more: https://positivepsychology.com/cbt-cognitive-restructuring-cognitive-distortions/


The key consideration in both Transformative Learning and Cognitive Restructuring is that the new learning and/or therapy MUST be active. The student needs to be working with the material to discover their existing thoughts, think through those thoughts, and then chart alternatives to existing thinking. That's why our courses are full of things like journaling (recording their thoughts), role play (thinking through scenarios) and planning (making plans to think and act differently).


It's important to understand that while video courses may be more fun to take, particularly for people who prefer a visual learning style, they are a passive form of learning that doesn't achieve the goals of Transformative Learning or Cognitive Restructuring. Some of our courses have some video in them, but that video is typically used sparingly and to either demonstrate a scenario or to reinforce points that the student has already learned.


This approach to adult learning may be described as “dry” and difficult, but it is effective. Our goal is not to entertain, but to be the catalyst for positive changes in the negative behavior of our students. We hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little more about the science behind Advent eLearning classes. To learn more Advent and our programs please visit us online.