Northampton Electronic Collection of Theses and Research

Are students ‘empty vessels’ or can previous experience enhance future practice?

Power, A. and Holland, L. (2018) Are students ‘empty vessels’ or can previous experience enhance future practice? British Journal of Midwifery. 26(2) 0969-4900.

Item Type: Article
Abstract: In the pedagogical model of teaching and learning, used in the education of children since the 19th century (Hill, 2015), the educationalist has control, decides the content and mode of delivery, with the students as ‘empty vessels’ or passive recipients of information. In contrast, adult learners are self-directing, having a repertoire of experience and are internally motivated to learn subject matter that can be applied immediately (Knowles, 1998). Each student’s unique previous experience not only makes their learning very individual, it also has the potential to enrich the learning experiences of their peers and ultimately positively impact on the quality of care received by women and their babies. This article will consider adult learning theory to identify how adults learn best, identifying the link between previous experience and the acquisition and application of new knowledge and will go on to focus on the experiences of Laney Holland (3rd year student midwife) prior to starting her training as an example of the potential for previous experiences to enhance future practice.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Student midwives, adult learners, andragogy, previous experience
Creators: Power, Alison and Holland, Laney
Faculties, Divisions and Institutes: Faculties > Faculty of Health & Society > Midwifery
Date: 31 January 2018
Date Type: Published Online
Journal or Publication Title: British Journal of Midwifery
Volume: 26
Number: 2
Language: English
ISSN: 0969-4900
Status: Published / Disseminated
Refereed: No

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